As a South Carolina personal injury lawyer , I always try to stay up to speed on the latest product recalls since I feel it's my duty to do what I can to alert consumers about dangerous products. One of the main battles for the Consumer Product Safety Commission is that there is no easy way to reach everyone who purchased a product that became the target of a recall. For instance, with cars, they can pass hands multiple times. The original owner may be sent a notification in the mail, but by that time, the car may have already been sold to several different owners.
While the CPSC does a good job of archiving all the recall information on their website, I'd be surprised if many people actually check the site often to see if anything they own has been recalled. And, unless the recall affects numerous people or has catastrophic results, like the salmonella egg recall or Toyota's sticky floor mat recall, the media is not likely to pick up the story. But what is the one thing that most of us have on hand at all times? Our cell phones.
So in an attempt to get recall information directly into consumers hands, the CPSC is making their data available through a smart phone application available through recalls.gov . Retailers can even use this application to be alerted when a recall is issued so that they can immediately halt the sale of that defective product and thus mitigate the chance of personal injury . With the data readily available in .xml format, the CPSC urges software developers to create other cutting edge applications to spread the recall word to consumers.