WASHIINGTON, D.C. -- The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) unanimously approved a new rule setting guidelines and requirements for information in mandatory recall notices. A mandatory recall can be ordered by the Commission or a U.S. District Court.
Each section of the rule is either required by Section 214 of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), or CPSC has determined it will likely increase recall effectiveness by helping consumers:
(a) Identify the product subject to a recall
(b) Understand the hazard identified with the product
(c) Understand what remedy is offered regarding the product.
Information required by the rule includes: product description, action being taken, number of units, identification of the substantial product hazard and reason for the action, identification of manufacturers and significant retailers, dates when product was manufactured and sold, number and description of any injuries or deaths, the ages of anyone injured or killed, remedy available to consumers and other information the Commission deems appropriate. The Commission could determine some of the information is unnecessary or inappropriate for a particular recall.
The rule does not contain requirements for voluntary recall notices but will serve as a guide for those notices. If CPSC decides to extend these requirements to voluntary recall notices, it would proceed with separate rulemaking.
In 2009, 100 percent of the recalls announced to consumers were done voluntarily and cooperatively with impacted firms. As more products get recalled each year, the high rate of cooperative recall announcements negotiated by CPSC staff is a benefit to the safety of consumers.
The requirement to create a mandatory recall rule was proposed as an amendment to the CPSIA by President Barack Obama when he was a member of the Senate.
The final rule goes into effect 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with the use of the thousands of consumer products under the agency's jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $900 billion annually. CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical or mechanical hazard. CPSC's work to ensure the safety of consumer products - such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters and household chemicals - contributed to a decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 30 years.
Federal law bars any person from selling products subject to a publicly-announced voluntary recall by a manufacturer or a mandatory recall ordered by the Commission.
To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury go online to www.SaferProducts.gov or call CPSC's Hotline at (800) 638-2772 or teletypewriter at (301) 595-7054 for the hearing impaired. Consumers can obtain news release and recall information at www.cpsc.gov, on Twitter @OnSafety or by subscribing to CPSC's free e-mail newsletters.