Company agrees to $390k fine for defective chairs

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has announced a settlement of nearly $400,000 with a company who failed to notify the CPSC that its office chairs were unsafe, even after it received reports of consumer injuries.

The company, Raynor Marketing Ltd, has provisionally agreed to pay a civil penalty in the amount of $390,000 in connection with CPSC charges that the company failed to report the product safety defect immediately, as required under federal law.

Raynor announced a recall of 150,000 office chairs in October 2009, following reports that bolts attaching the seatback could loosen and detach.  The company received 33 reports of seatback detachments, and 14 reports of injuries.  The chairs were sold exclusively through Office Depot between May 2006 and August 2009 for between $300 and $350.

Federal law requires that manufacturers, distributors, and retailers immediately (i.e., within 24 hours) report to the CPSC information that a product contains a defect which could create a substantial product hazard, or pose a risk of injury or death to consumers.

In agreeing to the civil penalty, Raynor Marketing has denied CPSC allegations that it knowingly violated the law.

Source: Consumer Product Safety Commission