The retailer Transformco recalled nearly 20,000 four-drawer dressers sold exclusively at Kmart under the Essential Home brand and identified as the Belmont 2.0 model. According to Consumer Reports, the products are unsafe because they could be unstable if not anchored to the wall, posing a serious tip-over and entrapment hazard that can lead to injuries or deaths to children.
Details of the Recall
So far no incidents have been reported in connection with these dressers. But consumers are urged to stop using the recalled dressers immediately and move them to a location that children cannot access. This is particularly an urgent issue right now because many Americans are working from home or staying at home due to the coronavirus pandemic. Transformco is not offering a refund for the recalled dressers. The recalled dressers were sold at Kmart stores nationwide and online from March 2018 through April 2020 for about $60.
Instead, the company is offering a complimentary anchoring kit. For consumers who purchased the dresser on or after Feb. 11, 2019, the company will also provide a free in-home installation of the wall anchoring kit on request. Consumer Reports says this type of a recall solution is cause for concern because full refunds are a “critical incentive” to get recalled dangerous dressers out of homes and keeping children safe. Consumer Reports has urged Transformco to provide full refunds for these products.
This dresser model is similar to one that was recalled in October 2019 because it did not pass the industry’s voluntary stability standard. The four-drawer dresser, called the Belmont, was also sold at Kmart and Sears under the Essential Home brand name, and it failed Consumer Reports’ tip-over tests.
Dangers of Defective Dressers
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), one person is injured about every 20 minutes and one child dies about every two weeks when a piece of furniture, an appliance, or a television falls on top of them. Tip-over accidents involving dressers alone have killed at least 212 people, most of then children 6 and under. There is no current government standard requiring furniture manufacturers to test their products for stability before putting them on the market. All that exists is a voluntary industry standard.
If a dangerous or defective product has injured your child or a loved one, it is important that you contact an experienced product defect lawyer to obtain more information about pursuing your legal rights. Product manufacturers have a legal obligation to make products that are safe for consumers, and negligent manufacturers can and should be held accountable for their negligence.