This Popular Product "Needs to Be Recalled" Now, Shoppers Report
The company is waiting on next steps before issuing a recall.
There's a level of trust we give companies to provide us with products that are safe and effective. If that ends up not being the case, we at least expect manufacturers to hastily recall those items and for retailers to pull them from shelves. But as we all know, consumers and companies don't always see eye to eye, and that extends to recalls. Now, shoppers are sounding the alarm about one popular item, alleging that it carries a serious safety risk and "needs to be recalled." So far, the manufacturer doesn't agree. Read on to find out more about this contentious product.
Recalls are made to protect consumers from unreasonable and significant risk.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) was formed in 1972 with a "mission to protect the public against unreasonable risks of injury or death from consumer products through education, safety standards activities, regulation, and enforcement."
One of the ways it does this is by providing companies with recall guidance, and keeping the public up-to-date with product issues. "CPSC announces recalls of products that present a significant risk to consumers, either because the product could contain a defect or because it violates a mandatory safety standard," the agency explains on its website.
But sometimes consumers act before the CPSC does, and they're now claiming that a popular product is not safe for use.
Shoppers want this item recalled.
Concern is rising across the U.S. over the sale of one product. Multiple reports have popped up regarding safety issues with one specific stroller from the popular baby brand Mockingbird. Brooklyn-based mom CJ Chellin told Consumer Reports (CR) that she was pushing her two kids, ages 4 and 2, in Mockingbird's Single-to-Double stroller across a busy intersection when the stroller suddenly cracked in half.
"It just collapsed, and he was face down on the street," Chellin told the news outlet, explaining that her 4-year-old had fallen forward as a result. "It was terrifying. The light was changing, and it was very busy, with a ton of cars. But thank God, my kids were fine."
According to CR, this was Chellin's third Mockingbird stroller that had broken while her kids were in it. "This stroller clearly needs to be taken off the market. Three times isn't me having bad luck. Two times wasn't me having bad luck. There's a flaw. I want them to do the right thing and recall this," she told the news outlet. "Here I thought I was investing in something, and it was promising quality. It's very disappointing, and scary. A stroller has to be able to handle streets. We're not hiking, it's not going on the Appalachian Trail, it's going on Brooklyn streets."
Consumer safety experts have also warned about the baby strollers.
Chellin is not alone in her experience. According to CR, she is just one of dozens of parents who have shared similar stories about the Mockingbird Single-to-Double stroller suddenly breaking while being used normally.
"[The stroller] just snapped in half as we were crossing the street with our baby and toddler in it, sending my toddler to the asphalt face-first and dragging the seat under the now broken metal frame," one consumer wrote in a September Reddit thread, noting that she had only been using the single-to-double stroller for about seven months. Another user replied to the thread on Oct. 27 saying, "This stroller needs to be recalled. The same thing happened to us today."
The problem is so widely reported at this point that CR's product safety experts have said that Mockingbird should issue an immediate recall on the stroller. "Children could be at risk of serious injury or worse, months after the company first learned about the potential issue with this stroller," Oriene Shin, policy counsel for CR, said in a statement. "While one report about a broken stroller is unsettling, the number of reports about this stroller suddenly breaking during normal use is alarming and must be addressed immediately. Based on the number of incidents with this stroller and the risk to children of significant injury, Mockingbird should immediately work with the CPSC on a recall to remove the product from the marketplace."
Mockingbird says it's waiting on the CPSC to decide on next steps.
Mockingbird took to social media on Oct. 28, issuing a statement that the company had received "some isolated incidents from customers whose Single-to-Double Stroller developed cracks in the side of their frame during use, at times resulting in a break." The baby brand said it was taking the situation "very seriously" and had notified the CPSC of the issue. CR reported that Mockingbird would not be issuing a recall, but the company contests this, saying that no decision has yet been made.
In a statement to Best Life, Mockingbird spokesperson Emily Herring said, "As we told CR, we've submitted all relevant information to the CPSC (prior to CR reaching out for comment) and will continue working with the CPSC to determine the best course of action, with customer safety being the main focus of that assessment. Our public statement made on Friday was not a final conclusion, but rather an effort to inform customers of our ongoing process with CPSC, and to request that they inspect their strollers."
In the company's earlier social media statement, Mockingbird noted, "Although we believe the likelihood of experiencing this issue is extreme rare, if you own a Mockingbird Single-to-Double Stroller, please inspect the sides of your stroller frame for any visible cracks." According to Mockingbird, if you see a crack, you should "immediately stop" using your stroller and reach out to the company's customer service team. "Our top priority is and has always been safety, and it's so important to us that you feel confident using your Mockingbird gear," the company said on social media.
Mockingbird also contests CR's assertion that it continues to sell the strollers in question. In her email to Best Life, Herring wrote, "Consumer Reports has also falsely conflated the strollers affected by this rare issue with the strollers currently for sale. We've concluded that the strollers currently for sale are not at risk to be affected by this rare issue, which is why we are continuing to sell them."
UPDATE: This story has been updated to include Mockingbird's statement to Best Life contesting earlier reporting by Consumer Reports.