Costco to Pay $3.85 Million Penalty for Failing to Report Defective Trash Cans to CPSC
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Costco to Pay $3.85 Million Penalty for Failing to Report Defective Trash Cans to CPSC

The CPSC alleged that Costco did not report the defects despite receiving complaints and reports of injury

October 15, 2018

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has announced that Costco Wholesale, Corp. (Costco) has agreed to pay a $3.85 million civil penalty to settle charges that it knowingly failed to report, as required by law, that the EKO Sensible Eco Living Trash Cans contained a defect or created an unreasonable risk of serious injury.

What Happened?

CPSC staff charged that the black plastic protective collar in the opening on the back of the EKO Sensible Eco Living Trash Cans receptacle can become dislodged and expose a sharp edge, posing a laceration hazard to consumers. Costco received 92 complaints about the EKO Sensible Eco Living Trash Cans, including 60 complaints from consumers who received injuries, some serious, but did not notify the CPSC immediately of the defect or risk, as is required by federal law.

On July 17, 2015, CPSC announced a recall with the manufacturer of 367,000 EKO Sensible Eco Living Trash Cans. Costco sold the EKO Sensible Eco Living Trash Cans nationwide between December 2013 and May 2015, for about $50.

Beyond the Settlement

In addition to paying the $3.85 million civil penalty, Costco has agreed to maintain a compliance program designed to achieve compliance with the Consumer Product Safety Act and a system of internal controls and procedures to ensure that Costco discloses information to the Commission in accordance with applicable law.

Costco's settlement of this matter does not constitute an admission of CPSC charges.