Some products look safe but are actually hazardous. Products near children made to appear innocent can lead to child deaths. Product recalls help protect consumers and the public. IKEA agreed to recall millions of dressers and desks that led to child deaths and injuries.
The dressers and desks tip over when they are not bolted to the wall. The tip overs caused child three child deaths. The US Product Safety Commission’s Chairperson made a statement about the child deaths. “If you have or think you have one of these products, act immediately.” The recalled model info is available here.
Engineering safety requires first to design away the product’s hazards. If it is impossible to design away the danger, the engineer must guard against it,i.e. install guard mechanisms, like the repair kit for IKEA. If it is impossible to design or guard against the hazard, the product must warn of dangers. Medications are an easy example of warning hazards.
IKEA’s initial design was dangerous. The IKEA dressers and desks caused to tip over accidents since 1989. At first, IKEA did not issue a recall. Instead, they tried to open a repair kit program for consumers. IKEA hoped to send repair kits to consumers so consumers could bolt the furniture to the wall. Bolting down the dressers and desks should prevent child deaths and injuries. The repair kit program did not prevent a third child death though. A federal investigation went forward. IKEA had to recall the products to prevent more harm.
When consumers take part in the recall, they can still get a wall-anchoring repair kit or a refund. IKEA also agrees to pick up the recalled furniture from customers’ homes.
We wrote about the furniture tip over issue before. Every two weeks a child dies occurs from a tip over accident. New York began a campaign to warn parents of tip over hazards. But, we still maintain that businesses must be responsible for the products they sell. Especially if those products are likely to lead to child deaths and injuries. The business is in the best position to prevent an innocent-looking hazard from sale at all. The business is in the best position to realize the hazard.
Fisher Injury Lawyers represents people across the country in cases involving unsafe products. If you have questions for yourself or a referral, please call to let us know what we can do for them.