As reported by USA Today, Kidde, a leading manufacturer of fire safety products, has announced a recall of nearly 500,000 smoke detectors sold in the United States and Canada due to a manufacturing defect that could limit the effectiveness of the smoke detectors in alerting consumers of a fire. Kidde's web site contains further information, including photographs of the affected PI2010 and PI9010 models, along with instructions for obtaining a replacement if the product is defective. Kidde also announced the recall of millions of fire extinguishers manufactured over a period of 40 years, as we wrote on this blog late last year.
In this case, the manufacturing defect concerns a protective cap that was left on the product, apparently blocking the potential detection of smoke in a fire. Manufacturing defects such as this one could lead to a claim under Georgia's product liability law if the defect results in the injury or death of someone, or in damage to property. In this case, there appear to be no reported incidents resulting from the possible defect, and the manufacturer's web site instructions describe how to determine if the device is, in fact, defective.