The staff of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is warning consumers who own a Kazuma Meerkat 50 Youth All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) that children are at risk of injury or death due to multiple safety defects with this off-road vehicle. The ATVs, which were imported by Kazuma Pacific Inc., of Stafford, Texas, were found to have several serious defects. CPSC staff has determined that the Meerkat 50 lacks front brakes, has no parking brake, is missing a neutral indicator light, and can be started in gear. Additionally, the owner's manual does not contain complete information on safe operation and maintenance of the ATV.
CPSC staff recommends that consumers stop using the product immediately because it is unsafe. The staff recommends that consumers demand a refund of the purchase price from the importer or dealer due to the defective condition of the ATV.
The risk with these ATVs is severe because these vehicles are intended for children age 6 to 11. In many cases, youth riders are just learning how to operate an ATV and may not have the experience necessary to help them avoid hazards associated with this product's defects.
Kazuma Pacific has refused to provide complete incident or injury information for any of their products. Therefore, CPSC has been unable to determine how many children have been injured. Between December 2006 and May 2007, Kazuma Pacific has impeded CPSC's efforts to protect the safety of children, by refusing to implement a corrective action plan for this ATV.
Kazuma Pacific has sold at least 2,700 Meerkat 50 ATVs and has stated that they are continuing to sell the units that CPSC staff found to be defective. Kazuma dealers and Web retailers nationwide have sold this ATV since 2003 for between $525 and $825.
CPSC staff is requesting that consumers immediately report any incidents involving the Kazuma Meerkat 50 to the CPSC Hotline at (800) 638-2772 or to the CPSC Web site at www.cpsc.gov
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 thousands of types of consumer products under the agency’s jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries, and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $1 trillion annually. CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical or mechanical hazard. CPSC's work to help 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 40 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 @USCPSC or by subscribing to CPSC's free e-mail newsletters.
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