Fire Flammability Expert Gordon Damant takes Issue with CPSC's Recall Process

"Almost every day I receive copies of press releases from the CPSC that memorialize that the agency has recalled X number of products (sometimes involving 10's of thousands of individual products) for known or suspected safety violations. Many of these releases contain language that suggests that, although the CPSC knows of no actual injuries or deaths resulting from the alleged safety defect(s), the recall action is taken to prevent injury or death that might occur due to the continued use of the potentially dangerous product. In such instances it appears that CPSC errs on the side of caution and takes preventative action to forestall potential injury. The contrast and disconnect between such recall regulatory actions (even though they are apparently initiated under a different section of the Act), and the CPSC's 35-year response to the catastrophic public safety problems caused by highly flammable residential upholstered furniture is beyond belief. Yes, the problem has been- and continues to be challenging, but while CPSC has vacillated from one potential solution to another, other more progressive government agencies both in the United States and Europe have successfully implemented fire safety standards that address both cigarette and small open-flame ignition of furniture used in both residential and public occupancies."

Letter from Gordon Damant to CPSC, 2009.