Note: A settlement between CPSC and the firm was reached
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced today the filing of a lawsuit (PDF) against Ardisam Inc., of Cumberland, Wis., in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin. The lawsuit alleges that Ardisam failed to report in a timely manner, as required by federal law, serious injuries with the Big Foot and Lite Foot Series hunting tree stands. In July 2004, these tree stands were the subject of a recall.
The lawsuit alleges that Ardisam received incident information beginning in April 2000 that the tree stands unexpectedly detached from trees, resulting in broken bones and other serious injuries to consumers. It is alleged that the company failed to immediately inform CPSC of this information as required by federal law. Ardisam finally reported information to CPSC in May 2004.
"The law is clear – companies must immediately tell CPSC about products that could pose a substantial risk or create an unreasonable risk of serious injury or death" said CPSC Acting Chairman Nancy Nord. "The quicker a company tells CPSC about a dangerous product, the quicker we can work to protect the health and safety of consumers."
Under the Consumer Product Safety Act, manufacturers, distributors and retailers are required to report to CPSC information about products that could create a substantial risk of injury to the public or that create an unreasonable risk of serious injury or death.
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.