The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has created a recall app that alerts people when a product has been declared defective and recalled. The country’s chief product safety regulator created the app to make recall information more accessible to consumers. The app is just one part of the CPSC’s efforts to make the recall communication process more modern, and the CPSC is hoping to encourage manufacturers to develop marketing strategies for recalls so consumers will know right away that a product they’ve bought or used is unsafe.
With this app, the CPSC is hoping that consumers will be more likely to get information about unsafe products quickly and will then take action to return the unsafe product. At the current time, the number of people returning recalled products is very low, according to the Consumers Union website, with only about 6% of people taking corrective action once they learn of a product recall.
Pros and Cons of the CPSC App
While the app’s creator certainly meant well, the app, itself, has received some harsh criticism in its infancy. The CPSC points out that that the current version of the app is a beta version and is encouraging user feedback on its effectiveness. Based on that feedback, the CPSC will tweak the app before making it available to all consumers. Early analysis of the app shows some advantages and disadvantages.
First, the positive features of the app are that its home page features recent product recalls with photographs of the product, the recall date, and a brief description of the product. The app also contains a search feature that allows users to filter by product name, product model, and/or date range.
The cons are that the app’s label is misleading in that it actually a web page on the CPSC website rather than a downloadable app. While users are encouraged to “install” it by saving the web page to the home screen of their phones, attempts to view the details of the featured products on the app bring users to the CPSC web page for that specific product. Second, the app lacks any notification system for users to set and receive alerts for recalls on specific products. Therefore, it appears that the app would be useful only for users who regularly search for recalled products or had already heard of a recall elsewhere and were simply visiting the app to confirm that a recall had been issued.
Seek Legal Counsel
Dangerous or otherwise defective products cause countless injuries and deaths to unsuspecting consumers each year in the United States. Product manufacturers owe consumers a duty to make sure their products are safe from defects that can cause injury or death. When companies fail to design and manufacture safe products, people are at risk of injury or death while using the dangerous product.
If a defective product has caused you injury, or if a loved one has died due to a dangerous product, you may have a valid product liability claim, you should contact a lawyer in your area who has experience with these complex cases. Multiple parties may be liable when injury or death results from a defective device or product, so be sure to share the details of your claim with an experienced product liability attorney. There are time limits to file these claims, so don’t delay in seeking legal advice.
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