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General Motors Recalls Pickups for Potential Fuel Leak, Fire Hazard

General Motors has issued a recall for 49,000 trucks after determining the vehicles are prone to fuel tank problems which could result in an increased risk of fire.

About the General Motors Recall

Reports state that the low-fuel-level sensor in the front tank of the vehicles can stick, causing the rear tank to overflow. This can result in the front tank expanding and coming in contact with the drive shaft which can cause a hole to develop in the fuel tank.

Dealers will replace the rear tank fuel pump, update vehicle software, and inspect front tanks.

Recall notifications are expected to be sent out beginning December 18 and repair parts will be available in February.

Pickups Affected by the General Motors Recall

The following vehicles are included with the GM recall provided they are equipped with two tanks:

  • 2011 Chevrolet Silverado
  • 2012 Chevrolet Silverado
  • 2013 Chevrolet Silverado
  • 2014 Chevrolet Silverado
  • 2015 Chevrolet Silverado
  • 2011 GMC Sierra 3500
  • 2012 GMC Sierra 3500
  • 2013 GMC Sierra 3500
  • 2014 GMC Sierra 3500
  • 2015 GMC Sierra 3500

 

Empire Kosher Recalls 11,000 Pounds of Chicken

Empire Kosher Poultry, Inc. has issued a recall affecting almost 11,000 pounds of raw, boneless, skinless chicken breast products after an employee found metal material in a chicken breast at an Empire Kosher facility.

About the Empire Kosher Recall

According to Food Safety News, Empire Kosher issued a nationwide recall for 10,839 pounds of chicken packaged on November 2 with sell-by dates ranging from November 14 to November 17.

Consumers who have unused portions of the recalled chicken products in their home are urged to immediately thrown them our or return them to their place of purchase.

All of the recalled chicken has an establishment number of “P-1015” inside the USDA mark of the inspection of their labels.

Products Covered by the Empire Kosher Recall

The following products are covered by the Empire Kosher Poultry recall:

  • 4- to 5.25-pound tray packages containing chicken breasts labeled “Empire KOSHER NATURAL Chicken Breasts, Boneless & Skinless” with case code 46375 and “Sell By” date 11/14/17;
  • 1- to 1.25-pound tray packages containing chicken breasts labeled “Empire KOSHER NATURAL Chicken Breasts, Boneless & Skinless” with case code 7488 and “Sell By” date 11/16/17;
  • 5-pound tray packages containing chicken breasts labeled “Empire KOSHER NATURAL Chicken Breasts, Boneless & Skinless” with case code 7598 and “Sell By” date11/16/17;
  • 1- to1.25-pound tray packages containing chicken breasts labeled “Empire KOSHER NATURAL Chicken Breasts, Boneless & Skinless” with case code 92615 and “Sell By” date 11/17/17; and
  • 1- to 1.25-pound tray packages containing chicken breasts labeled “Empire KOSHER NATURAL Chicken Breasts, Boneless & Skinless” with case code 7888 and “Sell By” date 11/16/17.

 

 

OshKosh Recalls Quilted Baby Jackets for Choking Hazard

OshKosh has recalled 43,000 Baby B’gosh quilted jackets for a potential choking hazard.

About the OshKosh Baby Jacket Recall

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the recall affects pink and gray OshKosh Baby B’gosh quilted jackets. Reports suggest snaps used on the jackets can detach and pose a choking hazard to young children.

Consumers are urged to take the recalled jackets away from children and return them to any OshKosh or Carter’s store or contact OshKosh for a full refund in the form of a $34 gift card (for an infant size) or $36 gift card (for a toddler size).

The recalled jackets were sold at OshKosh, Bon-Ton, Kohl’s, Fred Meyer and other retail and department stores nationwide from August 2017 to September 2017 for between $35 and $40.

Description of the Recalled Baby Jackets

The following information was provided by the CPSC:

ColorStyle NumbersSizeUPC Codes
Pink130039100-3M190795946918
6M190795946956
9M190795946963
12M190795946925
18M190795946932
24M190795946949
230039102T190795946062
3T190795946079
4T190795946086
5T190795946093
Gray126914100-3M190795930399
12M190795930405
18M190795930412
24M190795930429
6M190795930436
9M190795930443
226914102T190795919660
3T190795919677
4T190795919684
5T190795919691

 

 

 

Takata Airbag Explosion Prompts Nissan and Infiniti Recalls

Damaged car with passenger door open and view of deployed airbags

Nissan and Infiniti have issued recalls for numerous vehicles for a potential defect that can result in deadly airbag explosions and failures.

About the Nissan and Infiniti Airbag Recalls

It is currently unclear exactly how many vehicles are affected; however, according to WFTS, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) has issued an urgent warning advising affected Floridians to respond to their recall notices immediately.

“It is critical that Florida motorists affected by this recall take action,” says Terry L. Rhodes, Executive Director of the Florida DHSMV. “Florida’s hot temperatures and humid climate increase the chances that these airbag inflators will explode. Ignoring this important notice could mean the difference between life and death for you and your passengers.”

The agency added that the front passenger airbag inflators developed and manufactured by Takata can rupture during deployment causing serious injury or death.

Vehicles Included in the Nissan and Infiniti Recalls

The following model year vehicles are included in the Nissan and Infiniti airbag recalls:

  • Nissan
    • Maxima, 2001-2003
    • Pathfinder, 2002-2004
    • Sentra, 2002-2006
  • Infiniti
    • FX35/FX45, 2003-2005
    • I30, 2001
    • I35, 2002-2004
    • M35/M45, 2006
    • QX4, 2002-2003

If you are unsure if your vehicle is among those recalled, please visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website at https://nhtsa.gov/recalls where you can check for your recall by checking your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).

BMW Recalls 1.4 Million Vehicles for Fire Hazard

BMW is recalling more than 1.4 million cars and SUVs due to a risk of fires under the hood of the vehicles. According to the LA Times, the automaker issued two separate recalls as the potential fires have two different root causes, depending on the vehicle affected.

About the First BMW Fire Recalls

The larger of the two recalls affects 740,000 vehicles equipped with a faulty positive crankcase ventilation valve. Documents state that the heater for the valve can overheat and cause the valve to melt, increasing the risk of a fire even when the vehicle is not in use.

The recall affects the following vehicles:

  • 2007-2011 BMW 328i
  • 2007-2011 BMW 328xi
  • 2007-2011 BMW 328i xDrive
  • 2007-2011 BMW 525i
  • 2007-2011 BMW 525xi
  • 2007-2011 BMW 528i
  • 2007-2011 BMW 528xi
  • 2007-2011 BMW 530i
  • 2007-2011 BMW 530xi
  • 2007-2011 BMW X3 3.0si
  • 2007-2011 BMW X3 xDrive30i
  • 2007-2011 BMW X5 xDrive30i
  • 2007-2011 BMW Z4 3.0i
  • 2007-2011 BMW Z4 3.0si
  • 2007-2011 BMW Z4 sDrive30i

Consumers will be notified of the defect, and dealers will replace the heater.

About the Second BMW Fire Recall

The second recall covers roughly 673,000 vehicles. Recall documents suggest wiring for the heating and air conditioning system can overheat and cause connectors to melt, resulting in an increased risk of fire. Four drivers have been injured due to the defect.

The second recall includes:

  • 2006-2011 BMW 323i
  • 2006-2011 BMW 325i
  • 2006-2011 BMW 325xi
  • 2006-2011 BMW 328i
  • 2006-2011 BMW 328xi
  • 2006-2011 BMW 330i
  • 2006-2011 BMW 330xi
  • 2006-2011 BMW 335i
  • 2006-2011 BMW 335xi
  • 2006-2011 BMW M3
  • 2007-2011 BMW 328i xDrive
  • 2007-2011 BMW 335i xDrive
  • 2007-2011 BMW 335is
  • 2009-2011 BMW 335d

Dealers are instructed to replace the faulty wiring and connectors.

Government Recalls Defective Fire Extinguishers Following 16 Injuries and 1 Death

The federal government has issued a massive recall for 37.8 million Kidde fire extinguishers following 400 reports of the extinguishers malfunctioning during emergencies. The malfunctions have been linked to 16 injuries and one death.

About the Kidde Fire Extinguisher Recall

According to CBS News, the recall affects extinguishers that date back decades with some models having previously been recalled for other issues. The recall states that extinguishers with plastic handles and push button pindicators can clog, resulting in a failure to discharge. Nozzles can also pop off with enough force to be a dangerous projectile.

The extinguishers were sold for domestic use as well as for use by emergency responders. CBS News cited a 2014 incident in which an extinguisher used by first responders malfunctioned as they attempted to extinguish a fire following a car crash in Pennsylvania. The malfunction led to the death of Brendan Rosko. Rosko’s family received a settlement from Kidde following his death.

Kidde will replace the defective extinguishers for free. New extinguishers will be made with metal parts instead of plastic.

Models Affected by the Kidd Fire Extinguisher Recall

  • Plastic-handle models produced between January 1, 1973 and October 25, 2015:
    • 2A40BC
    • 6 RAP
    • 6 TAP
    • Ademco 720 1A10BC
    • Ademco 722 2A40BC
    • ADT 3A40BC
    • All Purpose 2A40BC
    • Bicentenial RPS-2 10BC
    • Bicentenial TPS-2 1A-10BC
    • Costco 340
    • FA 340HD
    • FA240HD
    • FC 340Z
    • FC Super
    • FC210R-C8S
    • Fire Away 10BC Spanish
    • Fire Away 1A10BC Spanish
    • Fire Away 2A40BC Spanish
    • Fireaway 10 (F-10)
    • Fireaway 10BC
    • Fireaway 110 (F-110)
    • Fireaway 1A10BC
    • Fireaway 240 (F-240)
    • Fireaway 2A40BC
    • Force 9 2A40BC
    • FS 340Z
    • Fuller 420 1A10BC
    • Fuller Brush 420 1A10BC
    • FX210
    • FX210R
    • FX210W
    • FX340GW
    • FX340GW-2
    • FX340H
    • FX340SC
    • FX340SC-2
    • Gillette 1A10BC
    • Gillette TPS-1 1A10BC
    • Home 10BC
    • Home 1A10BC
    • Home 2A40BC
    • Home H-10 10BC
    • Home H-110 1A10BC
    • Home H-240 2A-40BC
    • Honeywell 1A10BC
    • Honeywell TPS-1 1A10BC
    • L. 2A40BC
    • L. TPS-1 2A40BC
    • Kadet 2RPS-1 5BC
    • Kidde 10BC
    • Kidde 1A10BC
    • Kidde 2A40BC
    • Kidde 40BC
    • Kidde RPS-1 10BC
    • Kidde RPS-1 40BC
    • Kidde TPS-1 1A10BC
    • Kidde TPS-1 2A40BC
    • KX 2-1/2 TCZ
    • Mariner 10BC
    • Mariner 1A10BC
    • Mariner 2A40BC
    • Mariner M-10 10BC
    • Mariner M-110 1A10BC
    • Mariner M-240 2A40BC
    • Master Protection 2A40BC
    • Montgomery Ward 10BC
    • Montgomery Ward 1A-10BC
    • Montgomery Ward 8627 1A10BC
    • Montgomery Ward 8637 10BC
    • Quell 10BC
    • Quell 1A10BC
    • Quell RPS-1 10BC
    • Quell TPS-1 1A10BC
    • Quell ZRPS 5BC
    • Sams SM 340
    • Sanford 1A10BC
    • Sanford 2A40BC
    • Sanford TPS-1 1A10BC
    • Sanford TPS-1 2A40BC
    • Sears 2RPS   5BC
    • Sears 58033 10BC
    • Sears 58043 1A10BC
    • Sears 5805  2A40BC
    • Sears 958034
    • Sears 958044
    • Sears 958054
    • Sears 958075
    • Sears RPS-1 10BC
    • Sears TPS-1  1A10BC
    • Sears TPS-1 2A40BC
    • Traveler 10BC
    • Traveler 1A10BC
    • Traveler 2A40BC
    • Traveler T-10 10BC
    • Traveler T-110 1A10BC
    • Traveler T-240 2A40BC
    • Volunteer 1A10BC
    • Volunteer TPS-V 1A10BC
    • XL 2.5 TCZ
    • XL 2.5 TCZ-3
    • XL 2.5 TCZ-4
    • XL 2.75 RZ
    • XL 2.75 RZ-3
    • XL 2-3/4 RZ
    • XL 340HD
    • XL 4 TXZ
    • XL 5 PK
    • XL 5 TCZ
    • XL 5 TCZ-1
    • XL5 MR
    • XL 6 RZ
  • Plastic-handle models with date codes between January 2, 2012 and August 15, 2017:
    • AUTO FX5 II-1
    • FA10G
    • FA10T
    • FA110G
    • FA5-1
    • FA5G
    • FC10
    • FC110
    • FC5
    • FS10
    • FS110
    • FS5
    • FX10K
    • FX5 II
    • H110G
    • H5G
    • M10G
    • M10GM
    • M110G
    • M110GM
    • M5G
    • M5GM
    • RESSP
  • Push Button Pindicator Models manufactured between August 11, 1995 and September 22, 2017:
    • KK2
    • 100D
    • 210D
    • M5P
    • M5PM
    • AUTO 5FX
    • AUTO 5FX-1
    • FF 210D-1

Study: Dangerous Chemicals Found in Many Popular Baby Food, Formula Brands

Toddler smiling and teething on a toy

A study of 500 infant formulas and baby food products across 60 different brands revealed that some of the most popular products tested positive for known potentially dangerous chemicals. Products were screened for more than 130 different toxins, including heavy metals, BPA, pesticides, and other contaminants that have been linked to cancer, brain damage, reproductive harm, slowed infant development, and other health conditions.

The Clean Label Project, a non-profit organization focused on health and transparency in consumer product labeling, revealed the results of their study on October 25, 2017. According to USA Today, the group used Nielsen data to determine the top-selling products to include in their study in addition to other emerging brands.

Dangerous substances that the study screened for include:

  • Arsenic: early childhood exposure can increase the risk of impaired fetal growth, cancer, neurotoxicity, and hormone disruption
  • Cadmium: adverse effects on the heart and digestive system
  • Lead: no amount of lead exposure is safe for young children, affecting almost every organ system in the body, and can result in behavior and learning problems, lower IQ, hyperactivity, slowed growth, hearing problems, and anemia
  • Mercury: considered a neurodevelopmental poison
  • Mycotoxins: toxic fungus that can cause a host of potentially fatal fungal diseases
  • Acrylamide: chemical created during manufacturing linked to brain damage, cancer, and reproductive harm
  • Pesticides
  • Antibiotics: low-level exposure can render antibiotics useless when an illness or infection occurs
  • Melamine: can have detrimental health effects on the kidney and bladder
  • BPA/BPS: linked to hormone disruption

In addition, The Clean Label Project also assigned a rating to each product for their nutritional content, downgrading products that contain added sugars, artificial colors, and preservatives as well as a lack of antioxidant activity.

Key Findings from the Baby Food Product Study

Here are some of the startling results of The Clean Label Project’s study:

  • Of the baby food products tested,
    • 65 percent contained detectable levels of arsenic
    • 58 percent contained detectable levels of cadmium
    • 36 percent contained detectable levels of lead
    • 10 percent contained detectable levels of acrylamides
  • 60 percent of products that claimed to be BPA free actually tested positive for BPA
  • 80 percent of infant formula samples tested positive for arsenic
  • Baby food products with an organic certification were found to have over two times the amount of arsenic compared to non-organic products

Popular Name Brands Receive Low Scores

Consumers may be surprised to see many household names included on the list of brands that received low scores from the study. The Clean Label Project assigned an overall score for each individual product as well as an overall score for each brand included in the study. Every product was assigned a rating of one to 5 stars for each category (heavy metals, process contaminants, byproduct contaminants, and nutritional superiority), with one star being the poorest rating and five stars being the best rating.

Here are some popular baby food and formula brands and their overall scores:

  • Babies ‘R’ Us — 3.3 out of 5 stars
  • Gerber — 2.6 out of 5 stars
  • Little Duck Organics — 2 out of 5 stars
  • Nosh — 1.4 out of 5 stars
  • O Organics — 3 out of 5 stars
  • Plum Organics — 2.5 out of 5 stars

On The Clean Label Project website, you can see the brand report cards and individual ratings for each product analyzed in the study. The group hopes the results of the study will inform consumers of what may be hidden behind the product labels of the baby food and formula products they purchase.

Child Harmed by a Dangerous Product? Contact a Product Liability Attorney

If your baby or toddler was harmed due to the harmful contents of a food or drink product, contact Thomas J. Henry. Our product liability lawyers are available 24/7, nights and weekends to evaluate your claim. Baby food and toy manufacturers should be held accountable if their products cause injury or illness to your child. A product liability lawsuit can help your child get the compensation they need for past and future medical bills. Call us today for a free legal consultation.

BMW Recalls SUVs; Airbags May Not Inflate During Crash

Damaged car with passenger door open and view of deployed airbags

BMW has issued a recall for more than 85,000 SUVs sold in the U.S. due t a defect that could prevent passenger airbags from deploying in the event of a collision.

Details of the BMW Airbag Recall

CNBC reports that the recall covers X3 SUVs from the model years 2006 through 2010.

BMW states that a mat meant to detect front-seat passengers can wear and develop crack which can interrupt electronic signals. This can lead to the front passenger airbag switching off, causing them not to deploy during a crash.

This is the third recall BMW has issued for the problem since 2013. Dealers will replace the mat free of charge.

Common Injuries Caused by Airbag Failure

Injuries caused by a defective airbag include:

  • Cuts and lacerations
  • Fractures and broken bones
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Neck and spinal cord injuries
  • Hearing loss
  • Blindness
  • Death

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 576 people were killed in automobile crashes where a front airbag did not deploy between 2001 and 2006. Of these victims, 360 would have benefited from frontal airbag protection.

 

When Can You Sue a Vehicle Manufacturer?

Damaged car with passenger door open and view of deployed airbags

In some auto accident cases, the responsible party may not be the driver of the vehicle or another motorist. Vehicle defects can cause catastrophic accidents, leading to serious injuries and in some cases death.

Ideally, motorists will learn about defects in their vehicle and can get them addressed or fixed before a tragic accident occurs. Unfortunately, dangerous vehicle defects may not become present or immediately recognizable to motorists and manufacturers alike until a series of serious accidents occur that are results of the defect.

When a defective vehicle component causes a person’s injury, they can pursue a product liability claim against the manufacturer. A product liability claim can help an injured victim recover compensation from a vehicle manufacturer for producing a vehicle with defects that caused the victim’s injuries. Defects can occur in the design, manufacturing, or shipping process of the vehicle.

Examples of common vehicle defects include:

  • Accelerator breaking or sticking
  • Airbags that deploy or do not deploy under right conditions
  • Child safety seat LATCH system anchor failure
  • Doors that do not latch properly
  • Faulty tires
  • Ignition switch malfunction
  • Leaking gas tanks or fuel lines
  • Seat back malfunction
  • Seat belt failure
  • Suddenly breaking steering components
  • Weak vehicle structure (learn more about the “crashworthiness” of vehicles below)

How to Prove Liability in a Defective Vehicle Case

Vehicle defect cases are not treated exactly the same as personal injury claims. In personal injury claims, plaintiffs generally have to prove that the at-fault party’s negligent or careless actions caused the accident that resulted in the sustained injuries. Product liability cases, such as vehicle defect cases, adhere to the strict liability doctrine, which does not require the plaintiff to prove that the vehicle manufacturer acted careless in the manufacturing of the vehicle.

In order to bring a product liability claim against a vehicle manufacturer, an injured plaintiff will have to prove that:

  • The vehicle defect was the proximate cause of their injuries;
  • The vehicle was used properly and for its intended purposes, as defined by the manufacturer, when the accident that resulted in the injuries occurred; and
  • The defect was present when the plaintiff purchased the vehicle and no significant modifications or changes in condition to the vehicle occurred thereafter that could affect the performance of the vehicle.

An important note regarding defective vehicle claims is that you may be precluded from claiming strict liability if you were previously aware of the defect (such as through a vehicle recall notice) and continued to operate your vehicle without getting the defect fixed.

What is Crashworthiness?

Vehicle manufacturers conduct safety tests on every vehicle they produce. It is the duty of manufacturers to produce vehicles that can protect motorists and their passengers in the event of a collision, which is a reasonably possible occurrence in the routine operation of a vehicle. Many injuries from auto accidents are unavoidable, but a vehicle should contain safety features and functions that work to minimize injuries and prevent the vehicle from causing additional harm to occupants when a crash occurs.

Seat belts, airbags, and the vehicle’s safety cage are all features that determine a vehicle’s crashworthiness. These safety systems work in unison to provide protection for occupants throughout the entirety of an accident, no matter where the impact occurs on the vehicle. A crashworthy vehicle minimizes crush inside the vehicle, provides occupant restraint, prevents ejection from the vehicle, and distributes and dissipates the force of a crash. Manufacturers have a duty to produce vehicles that will protect its occupants and can be held liable if their vehicle design fails to do so.

Product liability claims involving vehicle crashworthiness can be difficult to prove and oftentimes require the help of several automobile safety and crash experts, vehicle design experts, and other expert witnesses. Thomas J. Henry has a proven track record of handling vehicle defect cases, and we retain only the best expert witnesses from across the United States to provide expert testimony for our clients’ cases.

History of Deadly Vehicle Defects

In recent years, the United States has experienced several large scale vehicle recalls due to defects that proved to be deadly time and time again. In 2016 alone, the total number of recall campaigns reached a record-breaking 927. Here are three of the largest recalls that have been issued in recent years in the United States:

  • General Motors ignition switch recall
    • Six million vehicles were included in the recall
    • At least 124 fatalities and 275 injuries were linked to vehicles with the faulty ignition switches
  • Takata Corporation airbag recall
    • More than 42 million vehicles containing 70 million airbags were included in the recall, and the number continues to rise
    • At least 11 deaths and more than 180 injuries in the United States were linked to the dangerous and defective airbags
  • Bridgestone Corporation Firestone tire recall
    • Approximately 6.5 million tires were included in the recall
    • At least 46 fatalities were linked to the defective tires

Contact an Experienced Vehicle Defect Attorney

If you were injured due to a defective vehicle, call Thomas J. Henry today. We understand how daunting of a task it is to take on a large vehicle manufacturing corporation, but we have experience doing so. Our firm lead the charge against GM during their ignition switch recall, representing many clients who sustained serious injuries in accidents involving their defective vehicles. Our lawyers are available 24/7, nights and weekends to take your call and evaluate your claim. Contact us today for a free case review.

Mitsubishi Recalls 161,000 Vehicles for Potential Engine Stalls

Mitsubishi Motors Corps has issued a recall for 161,167 vehicles in the United States and Canada after determining faulty electric relays can cause engines to overheat and stall resulting in an increased risk of crash.

About the Mitsubishi Engine Stall Recall

According to the Chicago Tribune, the recall affects the following models:

  • 2015-2017 Mitsubishi Outlander SUV
  • 2015-2017 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport
  • 2015-2017 Mitsubishi Lancer
  • 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution

Most of the vehicles were sold in the U.S., but 28,615 were sold in Canada.

Mitsubishi announced that they will begin notifying owners about the recall this month and that dealers are instructed to replace the defective relays free of charge.

Dangers of Engine Stalls

If a car stalls while in operation, it can leave the driver of the vehicle without power steering, power brakes, airbags, and other essential safety features.

If your car stalls while you are driving, the most important thing for you to focus on is staying come. Try to apply the brakes and pull over to the side of the road. Both steering and braking will require more effort than usual, but try to avoid severe steering adjustments or slamming on the brakes.

Once you are on a safe part of the vehicle, try to restart your car. If you are unable to restart your vehicle, or if you just don’t feel safe operating the vehicle after experiencing the stall, call for a tow.

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