Massive Recall of 40 Million Kidde Fire Extinguishers That May Not Work
Kidde has recalled more than 40 million defective fire extinguishers because they may not work in an emergency. According to a USA Today news report, one death has been linked to problems with the Kidde extinguishers, some of which may have been on the market for more than four decades. In 2014, the fire extinguishers failed to work as they should have for emergency personnel who were responding to a fiery car crash.
The recall covers 134 models of push-button and plastic-handle extinguishers in the United States and Canada made from 1973 through Aug. 15 of this year. This includes models that were previously recalled in March 2009 and February 2015. These extinguishers could become clogged and fail to spray when needed. Also, the nozzle can come off with enough force to pose an injury hazard.
Injuries, Fatality and Property Damage
Aside from the one fatality, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) states that there have been 391 reports of extinguishers failing to work properly or of nozzles coming off, resulting in 16 injuries that included smoke inhalation and burn injuries. In addition, there were about 91 reports of property damage linked to this problem.
Those who have these extinguishers are asked to contact Kidde for a free replacement and for instructions on how to return the recalled models. Kidde has said it has worked closely with the government to start the recall and ensure that the extinguishers are replaced with different models – ones that actually work – as soon as possible.
The company also manufactures smoke detectors and other fire safety products. The recalled extinguishers were sold at Menards, Montgomery Ward, Sears, Home Depot, Wal-Mart and other hardware stores as well as on Amazon.com, ShopKidde.com and other online retailers. In addition, they were sold for use in commercial trucks, RVs and boats.
Product Liability Issues
It is unclear why this recall wasn’t issued earlier and why products as old as 40 years are just now being recalled for not working. It would be interesting to find out when Kidde started to get complaints about malfunctioning extinguishers and how long they waited to tell the government about this issue. Federal law requires product manufacturers to report defects, complaints and lawsuits relating to faulty products within five business days.
If you have been injured as the result of a dangerous or defective product, contact an experienced product defect lawyer who can fight for your rights and help you secure maximum compensation for your injuries, damages and losses.