Children’s Clothing Retailer to Pay Fine Over Drawstrings

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In a news release Thursday, the U.S. Product Safety Commission announced that Sunsations Inc. as agreed to pay a $60,000 civil penalty to resolve agency allegations that the Virginia Beach, Va., company knowingly failed to report safety issues with children’s apparel sold by the firm.

The CPSC claims that Sunsations sold children’s hooded sweatshirts with drawstrings at the neck from March 2008 through November 2010 but failed to comply with federal law by notifying the safety agency of the presence of the drawstrings. Drawstrings on children’s upper outerwear pose a strangulation hazard that can lead to serious injury or death.

In December 2009 and in March 2011, Sunsations recalled more than 15,000 children’s sweatshirts sold in Sunsations stores in Virginia, Maryland and North Carolina. While Sunsations has agreed to the settlement, which has been provisionally approved by the CPCS, the clothing retailer denies regulator allegations that the firm knowingly violated the law.

As a Los Angeles personal injury attorney, consumer safety is something that I am very aware of; I hope that no children were injured by wearing one of the sweatshirts. Because of my experience as a product defect lawyer, I know that the effects of a dangerous product can range from inconvenience and frustration to injury and sometimes death. I encourage consumers to think “safety first” when evaluating products for purchase.