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From Products Liability Law Daily, May 7, 2014

CPSC prevents 12.5 million units of violative products from entering Unites States in 2013

By Joe Bichl

In the last half of fiscal year 2013, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) identified through its high-risk cargo targeting system approximately 8.2 million units of consumer products that violated U.S. safety rules or that were defective. During the whole of 2013, CPSC prevented over 12.5 million violative products from entering the country.

CPSC’s targeting system, known as the RAM (risk assessment methodology), was initiated as a pilot project in late 2011, according to a CPSC news release. Currently, CPSC is proposing to expand the RAM program so that the program can become fully operational and thus more effective in preventing defective or noncompliant imports from entering the stream of commerce.

Specifically, the RAM allows CPSC investigators to analyze certain data provided by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) about shipments of consumer products arriving at U.S. ports of entry, and then make risk-based decisions about which shipments to inspect. The RAM also allows CPSC to recognize low-risk cargo and facilitate its movement through the ports.

With the assistance of the RAM, CPSC investigators and their CBP counterparts were able to screen more than 14,000 different imported consumer product shipments during the last two quarters of fiscal year 2013. During that six-month period, the screenings led to the identification of more than 600 shipments containing violative or defective products, totaling about 8.2 million units. About 550 of the 600 product shipments investigators stopped were children’s products, totaling about 2.1 million units. The leading hazards identified in shipments of children’s products continued to be lead content or lead in paint in higher than allowable amounts.

Acting CPSC Chairman Bob Adler said that “[o]ur RAM program is a win-win-win for CPSC, consumers, and industry, which is why we are working to expand our defenses at the ports.”

A complete list of products found in violation of safety requirements enforced by CPSC can be found at http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/Violations.

MainStory: TopStory CPSCNews

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