The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission announced last month that Haier America Trading LLC, of New York, N.Y., has agreed to pay a civil penalty of $850,000. The settlement agreement, provisionally accepted by the CPSC, resolves staff allegations that Haier America failed to report immediately to CPSC, as required by federal law, a defect involving its blenders that resulted in nearly 60 incidents and an injury to a consumer’s hand. The nut on the blender that holds the blade assembly can dislodge during use, allowing the blade assembly pieces to break apart, and/or crack the blender’s glass jar, posing a laceration hazard to consumers.
Haier America sold the blenders through retail stores between October 2006 and October 2009. While the company became aware of the incidents and injury between January 2007 and September 2009, it failed to file a full report to the Commission until October 2009. Federal law requires manufacturers, distributors, and retailers to report to CPSC immediately (within 24 hours) after obtaining information reasonably supporting the conclusion that a product contains a defect that could create a substantial product hazard, creates an unreasonable risk of serious injury or death, or fails to comply with any consumer product safety rule or any other rule, regulation, standard or ban enforced by CPSC. Haier America recalled nearly 54,000 blenders in December 2009.
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