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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR data is current as of May 28, 2020

Title 16Chapter IISubchapter BPart 1115 → Subpart C


Title 16: Commercial Practices
PART 1115—SUBSTANTIAL PRODUCT HAZARD REPORTS


Subpart C—Guidelines and Requirements for Mandatory Recall Notices


Contents
§1115.23   Purpose.
§1115.24   Applicability.
§1115.25   Definitions.
§1115.26   Guidelines and policies.
§1115.27   Recall notice content requirements.
§1115.28   Multiple products or models.
§1115.29   Final determination regarding form and content.
Appendix to Part 1115—Voluntary Standards on Which the Commission Has Relied Under Section 9 of the Consumer Product Safety Act

Source: 75 FR 3371, Jan. 21, 2010, unless otherwise noted.

§1115.23   Purpose.

(a) The Commission establishes these guidelines and requirements for recall notices as required by section 15(i) of the Consumer Product Safety Act, as amended (CPSA) (15 U.S.C. 2064(i)). The guidelines and requirements set forth the information to be included in a notice required by an order under sections 12, 15(c), or 15(d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2061, 2064(c), or 2064(d)). Unless otherwise ordered by the Commission under section 15(c) or (d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2064(c) or (d)), or by a United States district court under section 12 of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2061), the content information required in this subpart must be included in every such notice.

(b) The Commission establishes these guidelines and requirements to ensure that every recall notice effectively helps consumers and other persons to:

(1) Identify the specific product to which the recall notice pertains;

(2) Understand the product's actual or potential hazards to which the recall notice pertains, and information relating to such hazards; and

(3) Understand all remedies available to consumers concerning the product to which the recall notice pertains.

§1115.24   Applicability.

This subpart applies to manufacturers (including importers), retailers, and distributors of consumer products as those terms are defined herein and in the CPSA.

§1115.25   Definitions.

In addition to the definitions given in section 3 of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2052), the following definitions apply:

(a) Recall means any one or more of the actions required by an order under sections 12, 15(c), or 15(d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2061, 2064(c), or 2064(d)).

(b) Recall notice means a notification required by an order under sections 12, 15(c), or 15(d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2061, 2064(c), or 2064(d)).

(c) Direct recall notice means a notification required by an order under sections 12, 15(c), or 15(d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2061, 2064(c), or 2064(d)), that is sent directly to specifically-identified consumers.

(d) Firm means a manufacturer (including an importer), retailer, or distributor as those terms are defined in the CPSA.

(e) Other persons means, but is not limited to, consumer safety advocacy organizations, public interest groups, trade associations, industry advocacy organizations, other State, local, and Federal government agencies, and the media.

§1115.26   Guidelines and policies.

(a) General. (1) A recall notice should provide sufficient information and motivation for consumers and other persons to identify the product and its actual or potential hazards, and to respond and take the stated action. A recall notice should clearly and concisely state the potential for injury or death.

(2) A recall notice should be written in language designed for, and readily understood by, the targeted consumers or other persons. The language should be simple and should avoid or minimize the use of highly technical or legal terminology.

(3) A recall notice should be targeted and tailored to the specific product and circumstances. In determining the form and content of a recall notice, the manner in which the product was advertised and marketed should be considered.

(4) A direct recall notice is the most effective form of a recall notice.

(5) At least two of the recall notice forms listed in subsection (b) should be used.

(b) Form of recall notice—(1) Possible forms. A recall notice may be written, electronic, audio, visual, or in any other form ordered by the Commission in an order under section 15(c) or (d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2064(c) or (d)), or by a United States district court under section 12 of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2061). The forms of, and means for communicating, recall notices include, but are not limited to:

(i) Letter, Web site posting, electronic mail, RSS feed, or text message;

(ii) Computer, radio, television, or other electronic transmission or medium;

(iii) Video news release, press release, recall alert, Web stream, or other form of news release;

(iv) Newspaper, magazine, catalog, or other publication; and

(v) Advertisement, newsletter, and service bulletin.

(2) Direct recall notice. A direct recall notice should be used for each consumer for whom a firm has direct contact information, or when such information is obtainable, regardless of whether the information was collected for product registration, sales records, catalog orders, billing records, marketing purposes, warranty information, loyal purchaser clubs, or other such purposes. Direct contact information includes, but is not limited to, name and address, telephone number, and electronic mail address. Forms of direct recall notice include, but are not limited to, United States mail, electronic mail, and telephone calls. A direct recall notice should prominently show its importance over other consumer notices or mail by including “Safety Recall” or other appropriate terms in an electronic mail subject line, and, in large bold red typeface, on the front of an envelope and in the body of a recall notice.

(3) Web site recall notice. A Web site recall notice should be on a Web site's first entry point such as a home page, should be clear and prominent, and should be interactive by permitting consumers and other persons to obtain recall information and request a remedy directly on the Web site.

(c) Languages. Where the Commission for purposes of an order under section 15(c) or (d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2064(c) or (d)), or a United States district court for purposes of an order under section 12 of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2061), determines that it is necessary or appropriate to adequately inform and protect the public, a recall notice may be required to be in languages in addition to English. For example, it may be necessary or appropriate to require a recall notice be in a language in addition to English when a product label is in a language in addition to English, when a product is marketed in a language in addition to English, or when a product is marketed or available in a geographic location where English is not the predominant language.

§1115.27   Recall notice content requirements.

Except as provided in §1115.29, every recall notice must include the information set forth below:

(a) Terms. A recall notice must include the word “recall” in the heading and text.

(b) Date. A recall notice must include its date of release, issuance, posting, or publication.

(c) Description of product. A recall notice must include a clear and concise statement of the information that will enable consumers and other persons to readily and accurately identify the specific product and distinguish it from similar products. The information must enable consumers to readily determine whether or not they have, or may be exposed to, the product. To the extent applicable to a product, descriptive information that must appear on a recall notice includes, but is not limited to:

(1) The product's names, including informal and abbreviated names, by which consumers and other persons should know or recognize the product;

(2) The product's intended or targeted use population (e.g., infants, children, or adults);

(3) The product's colors and sizes;

(4) The product's model numbers, serial numbers, date codes, stock keeping unit (SKU) numbers, and tracking labels, including their exact locations on the product;

(5) Identification and exact locations of product tags, labels, and other identifying parts, and a statement of the specific identifying information found on each part; and

(6) Product photographs. A firm must provide photographs. Each photograph must be electronic or digital, in color, of high resolution and quality, and in a format readily transferable with high quality to a Web site or other appropriate medium. As needed for effective notification, multiple photographs and photograph angles may be required.

(d) Description of action being taken. A recall notice must contain a clear and concise statement of the actions that a firm is taking concerning the product. These actions may include, but are not limited to, one or more of the following: Stop sale and distribution in commerce; recall to the distributor, retailer, or consumer level; repair; request return and provide a replacement; and request return and provide a refund.

(e) Statement of number of product units. A recall notice must state the approximate number of product units covered by the recall, including all product units manufactured, imported, and/or distributed in commerce.

(f) Description of substantial product hazard. A recall notice must contain a clear and concise description of the product's actual or potential hazards that result from the product condition or circumstances giving rise to the recall. The description must enable consumers and other persons to readily identify the reasons that a firm is conducting a recall. The description must also enable consumers and other persons to readily identify and understand the risks and potential injuries or deaths associated with the product conditions and circumstances giving rise to the recall. The description must include:

(1) The product defect, fault, failure, flaw, and/or problem giving rise to the recall; and

(2) The type of hazard or risk, including, by way of example only, burn, fall, choking, laceration, entrapment, and/or death.

(g) Identification of recalling firm. A recall notice must identify the firm conducting the recall by stating the firm's legal name and commonly known trade name, and the city and state of its headquarters. The notice must state whether the recalling firm is a manufacturer (including importer), retailer, or distributor.

(h) Identification of manufacturers. A recall notice must identify each manufacturer (including importer) of the product and the country of manufacture. Under the definition in section 3(a)(11) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2052(a)(11)), a manufacturer means “any person who manufactures or imports a consumer product.” If a product has been manufactured outside of the United States, a recall notice must identify the foreign manufacturer and the United States importer. A recall notice must identify the manufacturer by stating the manufacturer's legal name and the city and state of its headquarters, or, if a foreign manufacturer, the foreign manufacturer's legal name and the city and country of its headquarters.

(i) Identification of significant retailers. A recall notice must identify each significant retailer of the product. A recall notice must identify such a retailer by stating the retailer's commonly known trade name. Under the definition in section 3(a)(13) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2052(a)(13)), a retailer means “a person to whom a consumer product is delivered or sold for purposes of sale or distribution by such person to a consumer.” A product's retailer is “significant” if, upon the Commission's information and belief, and in the sole discretion of the Commission for purposes of an order under section 15(c) or (d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2064(c) or (d)), or in the sole discretion of a United States district court for purposes of an order under section 12 of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2061), any one or more of the circumstances set forth below is present (the Commission may require manufacturers (including importers), retailers, and distributors to provide information relating to these circumstances):

(1) The retailer was the exclusive retailer of the product;

(2) The retailer was an importer of the product;

(3) The retailer has stores nationwide or regionally-located;

(4) The retailer sold, or held for purposes of sale or distribution in commerce, a significant number of the total manufactured, imported, or distributed units of the product; or

(5) Identification of the retailer is in the public interest.

(j) Region. Where necessary or appropriate to assist consumers in determining whether they have the product at issue, a description of the region where the product was sold, or held for purposes of sale or distribution in commerce, must be provided.

(k) Dates of manufacture and sale. A recall notice must state the month and year in which the manufacture of the product began and ended, and the month and year in which the retail sales of the product began and ended. These dates must be included for each make and model of the product.

(l) Price. A recall notice must state the approximate retail price or price range of the product.

(m) Description of incidents, injuries, and deaths. A recall notice must contain a clear and concise summary description of all incidents (including, but not limited to, property damage), injuries, and deaths associated with the product conditions or circumstances giving rise to the recall, as well as a statement of the number of such incidents, injuries, and deaths. The description must enable consumers and other persons to readily understand the nature and extent of the incidents and injuries. A recall notice must state the ages of all persons injured and killed. A recall notice must state the dates or range of dates on which the Commission received information about injuries and deaths.

(n) Description of remedy. A recall notice must contain a clear and concise statement, readily understandable by consumers and other persons, of:

(1) Each remedy available to a consumer for the product conditions or circumstances giving rise to the recall. Remedies include, but are not limited to, refunds, product repairs, product replacements, rebates, coupons, gifts, premiums, and other incentives.

(2) All specific actions that a consumer must take to obtain each remedy, including, but not limited to, instructions on how to participate in the recall. These actions may include, but are not limited to, contacting a firm, removing the product from use, discarding the product, returning part or all of the product, or removing or disabling part of the product.

(3) All specific information that a consumer needs in order to obtain each remedy and to obtain all information about each remedy. This information may include, but is not limited to, the following: Manufacturer, retailer, and distributor contact information (such as name, address, telephone and facsimile numbers, e-mail address, and Web site address); whether telephone calls will be toll-free or collect; and telephone number days and hours of operation including time zone.

(o) Other information. A recall notice must contain such other information as the Commission for purposes of an order under section 15(c) or (d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2064(c) or (d)), or a United States district court for purposes of an order under section 12 of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2061), deems appropriate and orders.

§1115.28   Multiple products or models.

For each product or model covered by a recall notice, the notice must meet the requirements of this subpart.

§1115.29   Final determination regarding form and content.

(a) Commission or court discretion. The recall notice content required by this subpart must be included in a recall notice whether or not the firm admits the existence of a defect or of an actual or potential hazard, and whether or not the firm concedes the accuracy or applicability of all of the information contained in the recall notice. The Commission will make the final determination as to the form and content of the recall notice for purposes of an order under section 15(c) or (d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2064(c) or (d)), and a United States district court will make the final determination as to the form and content of a recall notice for purposes of an order under section 12 of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2061).

(b) Recall notice exceptions. The Commission for purposes of an order under section 15(c) or (d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2064(c) or (d)), or a United States district court for purposes of an order under section 12 of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2061), may determine that one or more of the recall notice requirements set forth in this subpart is not required, and will not be included, in a recall notice.

(c) Commission approval. Before a firm may publish, broadcast, or otherwise disseminate a recall notice to be issued pursuant to an order under section 15(c) or (d) of the CPSA (15 U.S.C. 2064(c) or (d)), the Commission must review and agree in writing to all aspects of the notice.

Appendix to Part 1115—Voluntary Standards on Which the Commission Has Relied Under Section 9 of the Consumer Product Safety Act

The following are the voluntary standards on which the Commission has relied under section 9 of the Consumer Product Safety Act:

1. American National Standard for Power Tools—Gasoline-Powered Chain Saws—Safety Regulations, ANSI B175.1-1985 sections 4.9.4, 4.12, 4.15, 7 and 8, or the current version: ANSI B175.1-1991 sections 5.9.4, 5.12, 5.15, 8 and 9.

2. American National Standard for Gas-Fired Room Heaters, Volume II, Unvented Room Heaters, ANSI Z21.11.2-1989 and addenda ANSI Z21.11.2 a and b- 1991), sections 1.8, 1.20.9, and 2.9.

[57 FR 34230, Aug. 4, 1992]

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