Black & Decker Inc., the Maryland-based power-tool manufacturer, will pay $960,000 to settle allegations it didn’t report a defective weed trimmer, according to U.S. regulators. The Consumer Product Safety Commission, the subsidiary of Stanley Black & Decker Inc. “knowingly failed to report several safety defects and hazards” relating to its Grasshog XP model, and it “withheld information” as the agency tried to investigate reports of injury. It’s said that about 158 people were injured between 2005 and 2009.
Black & Decker apparently knew that the high-powered, electric Grasshog was defective by May 2006. The CPSC closed an early defect investigation based on incomplete information. The company didn’t provide complete information about “mounting numbers of incidents and injuries” until October of that year. By July 2007, when the trimmer was recalled, there had been more than 700 reported incidents and 58 injuries, according to the CPSC.
The device’s spool, spool cap and pieces of trimmer string could come loose, becoming projectiles. The Grasshog could also overheat and burn consumers. Following reports of an additional 100 injuries, the recall was re-announced in August 2009, according to the CPSC. The trimmer was sold for about $70 from November 2005 through 2007. Consumers can contact Black & Decker for a free repair kit.
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