Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Jaime Jackson Joins the Academy of Product Safety Attorneys

Jaime Jackson Joins the Academy of Product Safety Attorneys

Tue, 07/31/2012
The Academy of Product Safety Attorneys (APSA) is a group which advocates for the safety of various common goods we use every day. Jaime’s part in this organization will be to aid in the creation of a unified voice against unsafe products along with the several other attorneys around the country. APSA takes the vast knowledge and experience lawyers have about the preventable tragedies brought on by faulty equipment and use it to better the quality of safety requirements for all products. The organization’s website includes stories written by members of ASPA that show the faces of defective products, and more importantly how this sort of problem could have been solved by the company. Through his knowledge of product safety teamed up with the other members of the academy, Jaime will help to increase safety standards of all products, and hopefully make everyday living a little more safe for everyone. Best of luck to Jaime and the efforts of APSA! To check out the ASPA website see The Academy of Product Safety Attorneys.

Hyundai Recalls for Airbag Problems

Hyundai is recalling 221,630 vehicles for airbag problems, according to filings today with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Of the total, 199,118 Santa Fe crossovers from the 2007 to 2009 model years are being recalled because of faulty front passenger-seat sensors that may not detect smaller adults. As a consequence, the passenger airbag may not deploy when required in a crash. Seat sensors measure weight and tell the airbag system whether or not to deactivate the passenger airbag -- such as when children are sitting up front or if the seat is unoccupied.

The remaining 22,512 are 2012 and 2013 Sonata sedans for side curtain airbags that can deploy inadvertently because of leaks in the gas inflater modules. The Sonata recall will begin in August. Hyundai owners can contact the company at 1-800-633-5151. Hyundai has not announced a recall date for the Santa Fe. No related injuries have been reported.

In September last year, Hyundai recalled 2007 and 2008 Santa Fe models because of driver's-side airbags that could fail to deploy. In March, 1,633 Sonata Hybrid models were recalled for center rear seatbelts that did not comply with NHTSA regulations; Hyundai petitioned the agency to not conduct further recalls because the issue was "inconsequential" to passenger safety. In 2010, Hyundai recalled more than 138,000 Sonata models because of loose steering-wheel joints and 5,833 Sonata models for door locks that wouldn't lock.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Ford recalls 421,000 Escapes for Stuck Throttle Problems

Ford recalls 421,000 Escapes.

ABC World News (7/26, story 7, 0:25, Elliot, 8.2M) reported "nearly half a million SUVs, Ford Escapes and Mavericks being recalled after our Phoenix affiliate aired a series of investigations. The cars have what's called a sticky pedal. A defect in the cruise control cable that can cause the cars to speed out of control."

        The CBS Evening News (7/26, story 9, 0:20, Pelley, 6.1M) reported, "Thirteen crashes and one death have been linked to this defect." The Los Angeles Times (7/27, Hirsch, Times, 629K) notes that while the recall came "just a week after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened an inquiry into the problem, noting 68 complaints, including 13 accidents, nine injuries and one fatality," a consumer watchdog group, the Center for Auto Safety, "said the automaker has not acted quickly enough and should be fined."

        Bloomberg News (7/27, Naughton, Plungis, 1M) says "almost 424,000 US vehicles with three-liter, six-cylinder engines will be covered under the recall, according to documents Ford provided to NHTSA.." NHTSA spokeswoman Karen Aldana said that an "investigation remains open, pending the agency's review of the documents provided by Ford in its recall action." She said, "NHTSA will continue to monitor any future issues...to ensure there are no additional safety risks that warrant further action."
        Also reporting this are USA Today (7/27, Woodyard), the AP (7/27), the New York Times (7/27, Jensen) "Wheels" blog, and Reuters (7/27).

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Stryker Hip Replacement Recall

Stryker Hip Replacement Recall

LANCASTER, PA, July 19, 2012 – Stryker Orthopedics recently announced the recall of two devices used in hip replacement surgeries: Rejuvenate and ABG II.

Stryker terminated distribution of the two hip replacement devices after fears of corrosion of the metal-on-metal components, which they said could lead to pain, swelling and adverse reactions in surrounding tissue. According to Styker the recall is due to post-market surveillance, meaning that there have already been several complaints of problems with the devices.

“Hip recalls are not like bringing your car in to the shop to have your floor mats fixed, we are dealing with real human losses to real people who need help,” said Jaime D. Jackson, Esq. a lawyer at Atlee Hall, LLP who specializes in products liability.

This is not Stryker’s first recall over metal-on-metal hip replacement devices. In April, Stryker recalled the Accolade femoral stem, which was used with the MITCH TRH modular head/acetabular cup, due to significantly high revision rates.

The experienced lawyers at Atlee Hall, LLP are evaluating possible lawsuits on behalf of victims injured by Stryker’s defective hip implant components. They are dedicated to fight for the rights of all victims and get them the compensation they deserve. They are there to help the Stryker hip recall victims to navigate through the complex recall waters and help make sure their rights are protected.

About Atlee Hall LLP

For over 30 years, Atlee Hall LLP has helped victims who have suffered from serious personal injuries due to the neglect of another. Atlee Hall, LLP is a full-service law firm with offices in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, but has represented clients across the nation. Their injury attorneys have over 125 years of combined experience. They have earned some of the highest ratings a law firm can have in the state of Pennsylvania. For more information on Atlee Hall, LLP, visit their website: www.atleehall.com

Peg Perego recalls 223,000 strollers amid safety concerns

Peg Perego recalls 223,000 strollers amid safety concerns.

ABC World News (7/24, story 9, 0:30, Sawyer) reported, "A consumer alert now about a huge recall of baby strollers. Tonight more than 200,000 strollers manufactured by Peg Perego are being recalled. There's a risk the child's head will become trapped between the seat and the tray, which could strangle the child. One death has already been reported. Two models, both older, manufactured between 2004 and 2007, are being recalled."

        The Wall Street Journal (7/25, Jones, Subscription Publication) reports that Peg Perego USA Inc. is now recalling about 223,000 strollers because of concerns over safety risks. The safety concerns are especially related to the death of a six-month-old baby from strangulation eight years ago in Tarzana, California. The Journal notes that the US Consumer Product Safety Commission found that the baby was strangled when his head became trapped between the seat and the tray of his Peg Perego stroller.

        CNN (7/25, Sperry) reports on its website that in a separate incident in 2006, "a 7-month-old New York girl nearly died from similar circumstances." The story quotes the CPSC as saying of the Peg Perego stroller, "Entrapment and strangulation can occur, especially to infants younger than 12 months of age, when a child is not harnessed. An infant can pass through the opening between the stroller tray and seat bottom, but his/her head and neck can become entrapped by the tray. Infants who become entrapped at the neck are at risk of strangulation." The Digital Journal (7/25, Goessl) and the Minneapolis Star Tribune (7/25, Stoxen) "Health Check" blog offer similar coverage.

Ford Recalls Escapes for Fuel Line Problems

Ford recalls 9,320 Escapes for fuel line problems
Ford Motor Co. is recalling 9,320 Ford Escape SUVs, model year 2013, for possible
fuel line problems.

The vehicles in the recall have engine compartment fuel lines whose exterior surfaces may have been mechanically scored during manufacture, Ford told the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. When installed onto a barbed connector fitting, a scored fuel line may develop a split that can result in a leak, the auto maker said.

TI Group Automotive Systems of Ashley, Ind., was the supplier of the fuel lines, Ford said.

Ford manufactured the recalled vehicles at its assembly plant in Louisville, Ky., between Oct. 8, 2011 and July 11,

2012, the company said. Ford first noticed a problem with the vehicles when a Ford employee at Louisville, driving a vehicle to the shipping lot, noticed an underhood fire, it said.

Ford will replace the fuel lines free of charge. It notified dealers of the recall July 18 and owners the week of July 20.

The company is warning owners not to drive their vehicles until the replacement is made and advising them to contact their Ford or Lincoln dealers to arrange vehicle pickup. Ford will provide rental cars as needed

Monday, July 16, 2012

Stryker Orthopaedics Recalls Rejuvenate Modular Hip System

Stryker Orthopaedics Recalls Rejuvenate Modular Hip System

In July 2012, Stryker Orthopaedics voluntarily recalled its Rejuvenate Modular Hip System. The recall includes both Stryker’s Rejuvenate Modular and ABG II modular-neck hip stems.


Stryker initiated this voluntary recall due to potential risk associated with modular-neck stems. This risk includes:
  • possible fretting and/or corrosion at the modular-neck junction, which may result in pain and/or swelling.
Other risks associated with Stryker’s hip replacements include:
  • Joint loosening/dislocation
  • Device wear and tear, such as corrosion and fretting
  • Excessive metal debris leading to metal ion generation
  • Inflammation of tissue
  • Hypersensitivity/allergic response
  • Broken devices

History of Problems with Stryker’s Hip Implants

Stryker Orthopaedic’s voluntary recall follows a May 2012 Health Canada recall and an April 2012 Urgent Safety Alert that Stryker released about serious health risks associated with the product.
The FDA issued warnings to the company from 2005 – 2007 before instituting, in January 2008, a nationwide recall of parts manufactured for use in the socket portion of hip replacements. The FDA recalled the products citing reports that the methods used in Stryker’s manufacturing plants did not conform with good manufacturing practices and that ‘manufacturing residuals’ at levels that exceeded company standards could contaminate the components.

Senator Questions NHTSA on Toyota Investigation

Grassley writes NHTSA over Toyota investigation.

In an article carried by 91 outlets, the AP (7/13) reported that Sen. Charles Grassley sent a letter Thursday to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration which questioned "whether the government thoroughly investigated electronic gremlins that could have caused Toyota vehicles to accelerate unexpectedly." According to Grassley, "key questions remain unanswered about what caused Toyota's unintended acceleration problems, despite investigations by NHTSA and NASA that found electronic defects weren't to blame." Specifically, "Grassley questions whether a phenomenon called 'tin whiskers' inside the gas pedal assembly or other electronics could be a cause, citing information sent to his office by whistleblowers." In his letter, Grassley requested that NHTSA explain its stance on tin whiskers and whether they could have caused unintended acceleration in Toyota. NHTSA said it would respond to Grassley's letter. Lynda Tran, a NHTSA spokeswoman, said in a statement that the known reasons for unintended acceleration in Toyotas were sticking accelerator pedals and gas pedals that became trapped by floor matting.

        The Los Angeles Times (7/13, Puzzanghera) reported, "Grassley said whistle-blowers recently have provided his office with information suggesting that the investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, with the help of NASA engineers, 'may have been too narrow." Grassley also wrote "that NASA engineers said just because they did not find proof that Toyota Motor Corp.'s electronic throttle control system caused the reports of unintended acceleration 'does not mean it could not occur.'"

Friday, July 13, 2012

Stryker Recalls Hip Replacement Devices

Stryker Recalls Hip Replacement Devices
Stryker Orthopaedics has voluntarily recalled two brands of devices used in conjunction with artificial hips in hip replacement surgeries, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration U.S. Food and Drug Administration
There have been at least 45 adverse event reports from patients who say the devices caused pain and/or tissue swelling.
Michigan-based Stryker, which has its biotech division in Hopkinton, Mass., said this week it would remove Rejuvenate and ABG II modular-neck stems, which attach to artificial hips, from the market and cease global distribution. The company said the incidence of complications is extremely low, but patients who experience symptoms of pain and/or swelling at the local joint site not attributable to other conditions, should speak to their surgeon.
“While modular-neck stems provide surgeons with an option to correct certain aspects of a patient’s anatomy and hip biomechanics, given the potential risks associated with fretting and corrosion at the modular neck junction, Stryker Orthopaedics decided to take this voluntary action,” Stryker Vice President and General Manager of Hip Reconstruction Stuart Simpson said in a statement.
Simpson said the company would work with the medical community to better understand the problems with the devices as the company continues to evaluate the adverse event data. This includes at least 45 reports of injuries, using the Rejuvenate modular-neck stem, since the beginning of 2012, according to the FDA.
The company is encouraging patients who received a Rejuvenate Modular or ABG II modular-neck stem to contact their surgeon. A dedicated patient call center can be reached at 1-888-317-0200 and additional information can be found at www.AboutStryker.com/ModularNeckStems3

Recall Repairs on 2002-2004 Ford Escapes Questioned by Safety Advocate

Recall Repairs on 2002-2004 Ford Escapes Questioned by Safety Advocate
The Center for Auto Safety has filed a petition with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration asking the agency to investigate nearly 320,000 Ford Escapes that could have damaged cruise control cables stemming from recall repairs for an unrelated acceleration problem.
According to the center, the cables were damaged during a recall of 470,000 Escapes from the 2002-2004 model years to prevent accelerator cables from getting caught on the accelerator pedal. Repairs made during the recall keep the pedal from returning and the throttle body from going back to idle position, which can cause unintended acceleration, the petition stated.
Ford said it is investigating the matter but has reached no conclusions yet.
The Center for Auto Safety, in Washington, claims Ford knew about potential damage because of an October 2005 bulletin sent to its dealers containing "updated illustrations" and a "warning regarding the correct procedures to follow when replacing the accelerator cable" that were different from an earlier bulletin.
The updated bulletin said the speed control cables could be damaged during the accelerator cable replacement.
Clarence Ditlow, the center's executive director and a longtime safety advocate, said in an interview that it's shocking that Ford, given its history with defective Firestone tires and the Transportation Recall Enhancement, Accountability, and Documentation -- or TREAD -- Act, wouldn't immediately do another recall.
Letter to Mulally
Ditlow said the center is going to send a follow-up letter to Ford CEO Alan Mulally today asking the company "to get it over with now" and not to go through with the investigation.
"I would expect this to be resolved very quickly. It's so clear cut that they need another recall," Ditlow said. "To me, there are only two issues. One, are they going to have to recall more vehicles than the first batch, which is the V-6 made in the Ohio and Kansas City plants. Two, how big is the fine going to be that NHTSA hits them with."
The center said in the petition that Ford, which never filed a defect report with NHTSA initiating a second recall, didn't inform the 319,506 owners of possible damage to their cruise control cables following the "faulty" recall repairs.
"They should've done a second recall right then and there," Ditlow said. "That would've at least picked up the cables that had been damaged by the earlier repair."
'Lethal consequences'
The center says Ford's inaction had "lethal consequences" in the death of 17-year-old Saige Bloom, who died in a January wreck after her 2002 Escape experienced sudden unintended acceleration in Payson, Ariz.
The vehicle had been repaired in January 2005 after the initial recall but before Ford sent the new bulletin to dealers about updated repair procedures, according to the petition.
It was later found that the vehicle, which was inspected with a borescope "in the presence of Ford officials," had a "kinked" cruise control cable that was jammed against a ridge in the engine cover.
"It really is sad it took a 17-year-old's death to uncover this defect. It shouldn't have happened," Ditlow said.
An inspector for the Bloom family made a video documenting the failure of the accelerator system and sent it to Ford in 2007.
Ford provided a statement regarding Bloom's death.
"We offer our deepest sympathies to the Bloom family for their tragic loss. We are in the midst of our investigation, and we have not reached any conclusions," the company said. "We will work closely with NHTSA to determine the cause of the crash and will take appropriate action if warranted by the outcome of the investigation."
The New York Times reported the story earlier today.