CPSC Establishes Recall Guidelines

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The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) unanimously approved a rule establishing requirements and guidelines for information in mandatory recall notices. Subsequently, a mandatory recall can be ordered by the Commission or a U.S. District Court.

Each section of the rule is either required by Section 214 of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), or the CPSC has determined it will increase efficiency by helping consumers:

Identify the product subject to a recall, understand the hazard identified with the product, and understand what remedy is offered regarding the product.

Information required by the rule includes (The Commission could determine some of the information is unnecessary or inappropriate for a particular recall):

Product description
Action being taken
Number of units
Identification of the substantial product hazard and reason for the action
Identification of manufacturers and significant retailers
Dates when product was manufactured and sold
Number and description of any injuries or deaths
Ages of those injured or killed
Remedy available to consumers
Other information the Commission deems appropriate.

The rule does not contain voluntary recall notice requirements but instead, will be a guide for them. If CPSC decides to include voluntary recall notices, it would add a separate directive.

The creation of a mandatory recall rule was proposed to the CPSIA as an amendment by President Barack Obama when he was a Senate member.

The final rule goes into effect upon publication in the Federal Register.