Machetes Recalled for Laceration Hazard

A large recall of about 149,000 Gator Machetes and 6,000 Gator Machetes Jr. has been initiated, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) just announced.The saw side of the machetes—which were manufactured in China and imported by Gerber Legendary Blades, of Portland, Oregon, a division of Fiskars Brands Inc., of Madison, Wisconsin—can stick in wood during use if the user’s hand slips off the handle and slides forward across the machete blade. This poses a <"http://www.yourlawyer.com/practice_areas/product_liability">laceration hazard.

To date, Gerber has received five reports of individuals cutting themselves while using the Gator Machete, all of whom required stitches. Gerber has received no reports of injuries associated with use of the Gator Machete Jr.

This recall involves the Gerber Gator Machete and Gator Machete Jr. with the original handle. The Gator Machete is approximately 25 ½ inches long and the Machete Jr. is approximately 18 ¾ inches long. The blade is marked with the “Gerber” trademark. The Gator Machete and Machete Jr. with a modified handle (an extended hand guard) are not included in this recall. Consumers should visually inspect their machete to determine if it is included in this recall.

The recalled Gator Machetes and 6,000 Gator Machetes Jr. were sold at retail stores nationwide, including The Sportsman’s Guide, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and Bass Pro Shops/American Rod & Gun, and through on-line stores from March 2007 through February 2010 for between $16 and $25.

The CPSC is advising consumers to stop using the recalled Gator Machetes and 6,000 Gator Machetes Jr. immediately and contact Gerber to receive instructions on how to return the machete for a free replacement machete. Gerber Legendary Blades can be reached toll-free at (877) 314-9130 between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Pacific Time, Monday through Friday, or at the firm’s Web site at www.gerbergear.com.

Of note, China is a country long associated with products that have been found to be dangerous and linked to an increasing and significant string of recalls and consumer injuries.

We have been following the issue of defective, sometimes dangerous, imports making their way into this country from China. This issue is just one of many concerning defective products, food, and medicines imported into this country from China. Such imports have been making headlines in recent years and this is just another one of many such issues.

In 2008, nearly 80 percent of all product recalls in the U.S. involved imports from China. Products such as dog food, baby formula, toys with lead paint, and even pharmaceuticals like heparin were found to have been made with toxic materials and other counterfeit ingredients that have long put American consumers at significant health risks.

Also making news is the ongoing and massive Chinese drywall disaster involving imports from that country.

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