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Mark Bello
Mark Bello
Attorney • (877) 377-7848

Black & Decker Pays for Failure to Report Safety Defect

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Stanley Black & Decker has agreed to pay $960,000 to settle allegations that it knowingly failed to report safety defects with its Grasshog XP Weed Trimmer/Edger. The trimmer was recalled in July 2007 after more than 700 incidents were reported and 58 injuries. The recall was re-announced in August 2009 after reports of 100 additional injuries.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) said not only did Black & Decker know the trimmer/edger was defective dating back to May 2006, but the company also failed to report it . When trying to investigate, Black & Decker withheld information causing the the CPSC to close the investigation. Although they agreed to a settlement, Black & Decker denies the allegations.

Federal law requires product manufacturers to file a report to the CPSC, within one day, when it suspects that a product may cause serious injury or death because of a defect. A product is considered defective if it is unreasonably dangerous, does not carry sufficient warnings, or the manufacturer fails to provide complete and adequate instructions for use of the product. As consumers, we expect the products we purchase to be designed and manufactured in such a manner that they are safe. We also expect that the manufacturer will provide reasonable warnings of product dangers and recalls.

Simple, inexpensive, safety measures could have prevented these injuries. Many times corporations will attempt to recall a defective product, but this is usually done after there has already been significant harm or damage. Then, a defective product lawsuit may be necessary to compensate an innocent victim, alert the public about the dangerous product, and improve safety. The continuation of unsafe practices is, simply, too expensive, once the lack of safety measures are exposed. If we support those who say the cost in dollars is too high (caps on damages; "tort reform"), we will pay, dearly, in human suffering and death. Our system was created to hold the negligent wrongdoer accountable and insure better and safer conduct and products.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is still interested in receiving incident or injury reports that are either directly related to this product recall or involve a different hazard with the same product. If you own the Grasshog XP Weed Trimmer/Edger and was unaware of the recall, discontinue use of the product and contact Black & Decker for a free repair kit. Click here to report your experience on the Grasshog or any other defective product. Be vigilant in protecting yourself against injury from faulty products by periodically reviewing the product recall list available from the Consumer Products Safety Commission.

Mark Bello has thirty-three years experience as a trial lawyer and twelve years as an underwriter and situational analyst in the lawsuit funding industry. He is the owner and founder of Lawsuit Financial Corporation which helps provide legal finance cash flow solutions and consulting when necessities of life litigation funding is needed by plaintiffs involved in pending, personal injury litigation. Bello is a Justice Pac member of the American Association for Justice, Sustaining and Justice Pac member of the Michigan Association for Justice, Business Associate of the Florida, Tennessee, and Colorado Associations for Justice, a member of the American Bar Association as well as their ABA Advisory Committee, the State Bar of Michigan and the Injury Board.