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According to a new report issued about product recalls and child safety, 2016 saw the highest numbers of products recalled for dangers to kids since 2004. The product recalls included some rather staggering numbers, with Ikea and McDonalds each accounting for nearly half of all the products recalled. The product categories do not simply include products marketed to or for children, but also include products that pose a danger to children.
The increase in overall recall numbers for products that pose danger to children comes after several years of downward trending numbers, and after a staggering low number of 5.5 million recalled units in 2015. The fact that the number in 2016 jumped to 66.8 million recalled units is shocking.
What's Going on With Ikea and McDonald's?
As many might recall, last year, Ikea issued a massive recall on the Malm dresser line due to the tip over danger. The dresser model was linked to a few recent child deaths, and suffered from a long, storied history. The company even settled a lawsuit for $50 million stemming from the recent deaths. According to reports, Ikea recalled 29 million units.
While the Ikea recall made big headlines, the McDonald's Happy Meal toy, a Step-It fitness tracker, still accounted for an equally large part of the recall numbers, also reaching 29 million units. The fitness tracker is basically a wristwatch-style pedometer, however, the device left many children with burns and skin irritations. The sheer volume of these that were released is a testament to the popularity of McDonald's Happy Meal.
Typically, when a consumer is injured as a result of a defective or recalled product, the consumer may have a cause of action against a manufacturer or distributor. If there has not been any injury, or other damages, a consumer may still be entitled to legal relief if they purchased a defective product. Frequently, manufacturers implement voluntary recalls to avoid liability and a public relations nightmare.
However, consumers often have to file civil actions for relief to get a manufacturer to act. Seeking an experienced product liability attorney's assistance is a good place to start if you've suffered damages, or believe a company is mass producing a defective product.