The US sues Amazon for selling dangerous products, The U.S. Consumer Product
Safety Commission voted 3-to-1 to approve the administrative complaint filed
against Amazon on Wednesday. It seeks to force the online behemoth to stop
selling potentially hazardous items, to work with CPSC staff on recalls, and to
directly notify and offer refunds to those who purchased them.
Amazon, for example, sold more than 24,600 faulty carbon monoxide detectors that
failed to activate when the gas was present, and nearly 400,000 hairdryers without
mandated devices to protect against shock and electrocution, the CPSC said.
The merchandise was sold by third parties using Fulfillment By Amazon, a service
that has the Seattle-based company storing and distributing the items for its sellers.
“We must grapple with how to deal with these massive third-party platforms more
efficiently, and how best to protect the American consumers who rely on them,”
Robert Adler, acting chairman of CPSC, said in a statement.
Amazon said it agrees a framework is needed for the recall of third-party products
and has been in discussions with the CPSC as a result, according to the company.
Amazon also said it takes prompt action to protect consumers when it is made aware of a safety issue.
“For the vast majority of the products in question, Amazon already immediately
removed the products from our store, notified customers about potential safety
concerns advised customers to destroy the products and provided customers with
full refunds,” a spokesperson said in a statement to CBS MoneyWatch. “For the
remaining few products in question, the CPSC did not provide Amazon with enough
information for us to take action.”
The CPSC acknowledged that Amazon had taken measures related to some of the
named products, but deemed them to be insufficient.