LG Fined $1.8 Million for Defective Dehumidifiers
The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recently issued a press release about the $1.825 million civil penalty facing major appliance manufacturer LG. According to the CPSC, LG Electronics Tianjin Appliance Co., Ltd., and LG Electronics USA Inc. (LG), agree to pay a maximum of $1,825,000 civil penalty in association with a failure to report defects in certain dehumidifier models. The CPSC states that LG knowingly failed to report as required by federal law, a defect and an unreasonable risk of serious injury with several models of dehumidifiers. These defective dehumidifiers caused fires and resulted in millions of dollars in damage.
Defective LG Dehumidifiers
According to CPSC, certain LG model dehumidifiers were manufactured with defective fans. The defective fans allowed the machines to overheat, smoke, melt or catch fire. These dehumidifiers posed serious fire and burn hazard risks to consumers. Under federal law, LG was required to report this defect to CPSC immediately, but they didn’t. LG was receiving complaints about the faulty machines as early as 2003, but a recall wasn’t initiated until almost a decade later, in 2012. During this time, there was over $7 million worth of property damage and injury expenses. Many of these dehumidifiers were also sold under the Kenmore brand name.
Civil Penalty and Compliance
In addition to the $1.8 million civil penalty, LG has also agreed to maintain a compliance program designed to increase safety for consumers. They have agreed to implement a set of internal controls and procedures and ensure proper compliance is effectively conveyed to personnel responsible for CPSC compliance.
Injuries Due to Defective Products
Manufacturers have a duty to make sure their products are safe for consumers. When those products aren’t safe, manufacturers also have a duty to report those defects and initiate recalls to protect consumers from known dangerous and defective products. It should never take a decade to announce a recall.