Toys Recalled Due to Potential Choking Hazards

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Cleveland-based Dunecraft Inc. is issuing a defective product recall for a series of marble-sized toys including Water Balz, Skulls, Orbs and Flower toys, that expand when place in water. The recall involves about 95,100 Dunecraft products sold in U.S. and Canada at retailers such as Bed, Bath & Beyond. According to a Consumer Reports article, the toys can be swallowed and cause a life-threatening condition. Officials also say that the ingested toys are not visible on hospital x-rays and must be surgically removed from the boy. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued a statement that an 8-month-old Texas girl ingested a Water Balz toy and needed surgery to get it removed in August 2011.

Injuries and Fatalities Relating to Toys

According to a CPSC report, in 2010, the agency received reports of 17 deaths and 251,000 injuries that were linked to toys. The report states that balloons and small balls were associated with 47 percent of the reported deaths in 2010. A majority of the deaths (11) were from choking while drowning caused four deaths.

Taking the Necessary Precautions

These are defective toys that should not be in the market in the first place. However, during this holiday season, store shelves are flooded with dangerous and defective children’s products that can put our little ones in harm’s way. The best way to protect our children is to be aware of the hazardous products out there so we do not bring them into our homes in the first place. Safety experts warn that when it comes to choosing toys, safety comes first. They say if it fits through a toilet paper tube, it’s a choking hazard and a young child should not have access to it.

Product Liability Issues

If a dangerous or defective toy has injured you or a loved one, it is important to understand that you have legal rights. Injured victims can seek compensation for damages by filing a product liability claim against the toy manufacturer. In such cases, victims can seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, hospitalization, treatment costs, pain and suffering, and emotional distress. In the case of a fatal injury, family members may file a wrongful death lawsuit seeking damages. Victims or their families would also be well advised to contact an experienced personal injury lawyer who will be able to advise them about their legal rights and options.

Ford Claims To Have A Fix for Engine Fire Problem

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December 17, 2012—Ford Motor Company recalled about 16,000 Fusions and 73,000 Escape SUVs due to engine problems that could lead to fires, but the company now claims to have developed an after-market software fix that will solve the problem, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Recall Issues With Ford Vehicles

The problem affects 2013 models with a 1.6-liter engine.  Only four-cylinder engines are affected.  The software update is available for both the SE and SEL models.

The software updates theoretically manage engine temperatures during overheating.  The company is stressing that these overheating issues only occur during very specific conditions, and that the software manages the engine during that set of circumstances.  Other overheating problems are not believed to lead to possible fires.  The software will be made available soon to customer through Ford dealerships.  The update may take a half day to install.  Ford promises to provide alternative transportation for any Fusion or Escape owners of the pertinent vehicles if they will turn in their vehicles immediately to the dealership.

This recall follows one only a week earlier by Ford for 19,000 Fusions for low-beam headlight problems.  The 2013 Fusions had insufficiently coated and cured headlamps that may lead to decreased visibility and the risk of an accident.

What Do Recalls Accomplish?

For Ford owners who get information about a recall and comply with the recall notification, these procedures can help keep them safe and prevent accidents.  Unfortunately, recall notices do not always reach the people for whom they are intended.

When a car company issues a recall, they attempt to contact anyone who owns the vehicle in question.  However, if the vehicle has been sold or transferred to someone else, that person may not receive the notice because the company does not have contact information for him or her.

Recalls are designed to protect the consumer, but they are also designed to protect the company.  The idea behind a recall is that it will prevent serious accidents that could result in injury or death for a driver or passenger.  However, recalls do not change the fact that a company can still be held liable for the damages that result from a defective car.

Liability Issues

Ford Motor Company may still be held liable for any injuries or deaths caused by the defects in their products, whether or not an owner knows about the defects.  If anyone is hurt by the problems with the Escape or the Fusion, the company may be liable if the collision or accident was caused by these defects.

A personal injury lawyer can help the victims who have been injured by a defective product such as a vehicle.  Manufacturers have a legal duty to ensure that their products are safe.  When a manufacturer releases a defective product, a personal injury attorney represents those who are injured as a result of using these products.  Anyone injured by a defective product should immediately contact a personal injury attorney for a free consultation.

Drug Risk Resource Center Alerts Female Patients About Yaz®

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The Drug Risk Resource Center, a group that works to bring awareness about the risks of various types of medications, has noted that both the generic and name-brand versions of Yaz®, an oral contraceptive manufactured by Bayer, has been linked to a high level of risk for blood clots, heart attacks, and strokes.  Bayer is currently in settlement negotiations with many of the victims of these side effects.

History of Yaz® Lawsuits

Yaz® was introduced as a “third generation” progestin birth control method in the 1990s.  These drugs were marketed as lower-risk for patients who used oral contraceptives.  They appeared to have less side effects than the androgenic drugs that had been marketed earlier.

However, studies soon showed that progestin birth control actually carried a higher risk for blood clots, especially deep vein thromboses or DVTs and pulmonary embolisms, or clots in the lungs.  The FDA required the makers of these drugs to include warnings to users of potential risks.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists also released information that birth control pills containing drospirenone could pose an even higher risk of blood clots.  This means that Yaz® and its other forms such as Yasmin® and Ocella®, could cause a much greater risk of these serious and sometimes deadly side effects.

A University of Copenhagen study released in October of 2011 linked the hormones found in Yaz® to blood clots.  At the same time, the FDA released a study, “Combined Hormonal Contraceptives and the Risk of Cardiovascular Disease Endpoints,” that indicated that drugs such as Yaz® could result in a risk of blood clots that was 74 percent greater than the risk level for non-users.

Because of the lack of warning given to potential users and the resulting rise in serious side effects from taking these drugs, lawsuits are now being filed to compensate victims.  These lawsuits are part of a product liability claim that is based on false advertising and lack of information given by the manufacturer about these drugs.

Victims who have suffered blood clots, DVTs, or pulmonary embolisms after taking these drugs may now be entitled to compensation from the manufacturers due to the fact that the drugs have caused serious side effects and even deaths in some patients.

Can I File A Yaz® Lawsuit?

Any woman who has suffered a pulmonary embolism, DVT, or blood clot as the result of taking Yaz® or another form of the drug may be entitled to file a lawsuit for compensation.  Bayer has already set aside $750 million to settle the lawsuits arising from these drugs.

In order to facilitate the large number of expected claims, Yaz® lawsuits were consolidated into what is known as a class action or mass tort lawsuit.  In order to be a part of this lawsuit, victims must contact a personal injury attorney and discuss their rights with a lawyer.  By becoming a part of the Yaz® lawsuit, victims may be eligible to receive compensation for their injuries resulting from the use of Yaz® or a generic version of the drug.

Toyota Set to Recall 150,000 Pickups

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Toyota has announced that it will recall 150,000 Tacoma pickups built between 2001 and 2004 due to a rust issue that could cause the spare tire to fall from its position beneath the vehicle, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Toyota has been risking several vehicle recall lawsuits of late after it was forced to recall several of its vehicles for sticky accelerators and other problems. This new recall is the latest in a series of problems for the automaker, and an NHTSA investigation has been opened into the company’s handling of its recall notices and procedures.

What Is A Manufacturer Recall?

Manufacturers are required by law to ensure that their products are safe for those who use them. When a manufacturer fails to meet this standard of quality and safety, lawsuits can be filed against the company for product liability.

In order to stem a flood of lawsuits when a product is known to be defective or dangerous, manufacturers will often issue a recall notice in cooperation with the governing body that manages the type of product in question.

For vehicles, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a division of the federal Department of Transportation, is the primary governing body that oversees automobile and truck safety.

A recall occurs when a company admits that a product is defective and offers remedies to those who have purchased the product. In the case of a vehicle recall, this often means free repairs or replacement of defective parts.

In some cases, however, the manufacturer is forced to buy back the vehicle due to insoluble problems related to the structure or operation of the automobile or truck. Toyota faced this problem a few years ago when it was found that the carriage of some Tacoma pickups and other models had rusted so badly that the trucks were unable to be repaired.

Anyone who owns a Toyota Tacoma manufactured between the years of 2001 and 2004 is eligible to take advantage of the recall. The company is offering to rebuild the rusted wheel housing so that a spare will fit on the truck and remain in place.

What Does This Recall Mean for Consumers?

The recall in question concerns rusting in a wheel well that holds the spare tire beneath the truck. The rust-proof coating applied to these vehicles was apparently insufficient to prevent a serious rust problem that resulted in the spare tire being in danger of detaching from the vehicle. If this happened during vehicle operation, it is quite likely that injury or even death could result from an accident caused by the flying or bouncing tire.

Whether a company issues a recall or not, if a victim is injured by a defective vehicle, that victim may be entitled to compensation from the company. Recalls are designed to prevent future accidents, but they do not release the company from liability associated with the defective design or function of a vehicle. Victims should contact a personal injury attorney for more information.