The Consumer Products Safety Commission continues to issue recall notices. But it states, “Due to the extraordinary circumstances surrounding COVID-19, some of the remedies identified in recall press releases may not be available at this time.” If not, the agency recommends that consumers stop using the identified products.
Southern Motion “Wireless Power” reclining furniture and Joybird Blythe dressers are products the agency says pose hazards to consumers.
“The lithium-ion batteries used to power the ‘Wireless Power’ reclining furniture can overheat, posing a fire hazard,” CPSC said. It added, “The firm is aware of six incidents of batteries overheating and causing fires to the chairs and floor coverings. No injuries have been reported.”
The units were manufactured by Southern Motion in Pontotoc, Miss. Some 2,300 were sold from January through September 2019 for between $1,000 and $2,500 by “Rooms To Go, Art Van, Nebraska Furniture Mart and other furniture stores nationwide.”
“Consumers should immediately stop using the ‘Wireless Power’ reclining furniture and contact Southern Motion for a free in-home repair, including a credit for the cost of the ‘Wireless Power’ lithium-ion battery option.”
Unstable dressers pose tip-over hazard
The Joybird dressers “are unstable if not anchored to the wall, posing tip-over and entrapment hazards that may result in death or serious injuries to children,” CPSC said. “The dressers do not comply with the performance requirements of the U.S. voluntary industry standard (ASTM 2057-17).”
The Home Furnishings Association for years has urged its members to stress the importance of anchoring clothing storage units to walls or other fixed surfaces. HFA also holds a seat on the ASTM’s furniture safety subcommittee, which writes voluntary standards for furniture stability.
Many HFA members make safety an important part of their culture.
[HFA: Take the lead on safety]
The Joybird Blythe dressers were made in Mexico and sold online at Joybird.com. Only about 100 of the units were sold, for about $1,700. They weigh 209 pounds. No incidents were reported. Last year, CPSC staff tested selected products for compliance with the ASTM standard. When units failed, the agency attempted to reach recall agreements.
Selling unstable products assumes high risks
“Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled dressers if not properly anchored to the wall and place it into an area that children cannot access,” CPSC said. “Consumers should contact Joybird for a free in-home repair to the dresser’s legs or a free one-time in-home installation of a tip-over restraint kit by a technician plus a $50 gift card to be used on Joybird’s website, or free pick-up of the dresser for a full refund.”
Retailers should not sell clothing storage units that don’t comply with stability standards. The risks of serious accidents or product recalls are too great.
[HFA: Dramatic tip-over video and latest recalls demand attention]