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Inj Prev. 2007 Aug;13(4):228-31.

Resale of recalled children's products online: an examination of the world's largest yard sale.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Dayton, Dayton, OH 45409, USA. kirschKe@notes.udayton.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To examine an online auction site for the presence and sale of children's products and toys previously recalled because of safety concerns.

METHODS:

Targeted items were randomly selected from US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) press releases of recalled children's products dated 1992-2004. Auction listings from eBay were searched for the 150 targeted recalled items for 30 days. Item, seller, and buyer information were recorded from the auction listings.

RESULTS:

190 auctions contained or were suspected to contain a recalled children's item from the target list. Most of the recalled items were listed for sale from addresses within the United States, with sellers from Canada, Australia, Great Britain, and Ireland also represented. On average, six bids were placed on each recalled item, with 70% of auctions eventuating in a sale.

CONCLUSIONS:

Recalled children's products were found to be available for sale online and were sold most of the time, presenting a risk of injury to children. Although the CPSC is charged with notifying the public of recalled items, these results suggest that potentially hazardous products are recirculating online. A multi-front initiative to decrease the presence of hazards in online auctions is needed. This initiative should include increased manufacturer efforts to improve recall return rates, a requirement by online auction sites that sellers verify non-recall status before item posting, and parental checks of government recall websites before item purchase. Investigation of parental understanding and awareness of recalls and the potential risks associated with recall announcements is needed.

PMID:
17686931
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2598328
Free PMC Article
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