Fitbit named in class action over defective product

This case involves economic damages and personal injuries caused by a defectively designed product: the Fitbit Force wireless activity-tracking wristband (the “Fitbit Force,” “Force,” or “Fitbit Force wristband”). The Fitbit Force is a fitness-related portable electronic device designed to be worn around the user’s wrist.  Fitbit aggressively marketed the Fitbit Force, touting its ability to sync with computers and smart phone devices; track user’s sleep patterns and fitness activities; and provide information on a real time basis.

As alleged, Fitbit did not disclose, however, the material fact that the Fitbit Force suffered from a uniform design flaw. This defect resulted in numerous consumers experiencing adverse skin reactions to the Fitbit Force. These reactions include, without limitation, blisters, burns and skin irritation. Fitbit has subsequently admitted that it has “has received about 9,900 reports of the wristband causing skin irritation and about 250 reports of blistering.

On February 20, 2014 – Fitbit announced a “refund program” for the Fitbit Force. On or around March 12, 2014, Fitbit issued a recall announcement of the Fitbit Force in conjunction with the Consumer Product Safety Commission (“CPSC”).

The complaint alleges that Fitbit’s belated recall and refund program is wholly insufficient. Fitbit’s offer of the retail price paid for the Fitbit Force does not address the substantial pain, suffering and other personal injuries its product inflicted on thousands of people. Nor does it adequately compensate those consumers who did not experience a personal injury.

See a copy of the complaint. Fitbit 4-10-14

Teck Metals, Ltd. Named in class action lawsuit over pollution related sicknesses in the Northport, Washington area

The Plaintiff is a resident of Northport Washington as was diagnosed with breast cancer and diverticulitis and, brings this personal injury lawsuit for strict liability, nuisance, and negligence against defendants on behalf of herself and as a representative of a proposed class of similarly situated individuals. Plaintiff and the proposed class seek a declaratory judgment that the release of toxic and hazardous substances by Teck Metals, Ltd. and Teck Resources, Ltd. through the operation of the Trail Smelter is a public nuisance and an abnormally dangerous activity for which Teck should be held strictly liable for all personal injuries.

The complaint alleges that Teck’s discharges of toxins into the Columbia River  affected the Northport and Upper Columbia River region.  Among the supporting evidence in the complaint,  was a medical survey of 119 current and former Northport residents which found elevated occurances of ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease.

On information and belief, Teck’s toxic releases have directly and proximately caused numerous other current and past residents of Northport and the surrounding area to be personally injured, including thyroid and endocrine disorders, arthritis, cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, brain aneurisms, Parkinson’s disease, respiratory diseases, eye irritation, and chronic nosebleeds.

Complaint: Teck Metals

Titeflex named in class action lawsuit over sale of Gastite® corrugated stainless steel tubing

This lawsuit is brought on behalf of a Class of all similarly situated property owners, against Titeflex. Titeflex manufactured, distributed, and supplied Gastite® corrugated stainless steel tubing (“CSST”) throughout the United States.

CSST is an ultrathin, flexible piping used to transport natural gas within both residential and commercial structures. It was developed as an alternative to the much thicker, more durable black iron pipe that has been used to transport gas within residential and commercial structures for more than a century.

This action alleges that Titeflex improperly designed and manufactured Gastite® and failed to properly test its resistance to lightning strikes. Gastite’s thin walls are susceptible to perforation by an electrical arc generated by a lightning strike, which can cause and has caused fires, damage to and destruction of residential structures, and creates a substantial and unreasonable risk of death or personal injury.

As alleged, after concluding that Gastite® was deficient, Titeflex developed FlashShield® in 2012, which purportedly contains all the features of Gastite®, plus a layer of metal mesh and two layers of semi-conductive polymer to “protect against potential arcing during lightning strikes by mitigating the potential damage to such system caused by electrical arcing.” The presence of Gastite® in Plaintiff and Class Members’ structures creates an unreasonable risk of fire due to lightning strikes.

GM recalls 2012 and 2013 Buick LaCrosse and Regal; 2013 Chevrolet Malibu Eco vehicles equipped with eAssist

General Motors recalled certain model year 2012 and 2013 Buick LaCrosse and Regal, and model year 2013 Chevrolet Malibu Eco vehicles equipped with eAssist. These vehicles may have a condition in which the Generator Control Module (GCM) may not function properly. This could cause a gradual loss of battery charge and the illumination of the malfunction indicator light.

If the vehicle is continued to be driven, the engine may stall and/or the vehicle may not start. In addition, there may be a burning or melting odor, smoke, and possibly a fire in the trunk.

GM will notify owners and dealers will test the GCM and replace it, as necessary, free of charge. The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule.

Chrysler recalls 2008-2012 Jeep Wrangler vehicles over airbag issues

Chrysler Group LLC is recalling certain model year 2008-2012 Jeep Wrangler right-hand drive vehicles manufactured February 1, 2007, through October 10, 2011. The affected vehicles have airbag clock-spring assemblies that could experience broken airbag circuits.

In the event of a crash necessitating airbag deployment, a broken electrical circuit in the airbag clock-spring wiring assembly can lead to non-deployment of the driver-side frontal airbag and will not be able to properly protect the driver, increasing the risk of injuries.

Chrysler will notify owners, and dealers will replace the clock-spring and add a steering wheel dust shield, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin May 2013.