Monitor and Respond to Reports
SaferProducts.gov is where the public can file and read complaints about thousands of consumer products. The CPSC collects reports of harm or potential harm about dangerous or potentially unsafe consumer products. Each report is reviewed by the CPSC staff of investigators and consumer product safety experts to determine what actions should be taken to protect the American public. A report can provide information that may contribute to CPSC’s decision to seek a product recall, seek penalties against any person or firm, or create new safety regulations or take other action authorized by law. Companies should be prepared to respond to reports of harm posted on saferproducts.gov. A best practice is to appoint a leader or the compliance manager to develop internal escalation procedures to gather customer incidents through company customer service representatives so that management can respond to all incident reports and escalate such incidents to determine whether a § 15(b) report is necessary.
After Registering, most businesses can receive notification of reports of harm on saferproducts.gov within the ten business days allotted by the CPSC, either on the website or offline with the CPSC. By acknowledging a report of harm and stating that an investigation is underway, companies can preclude CPSC from taking action until the relevant facts have been thoroughly investigated. As the investigation proceeds and more information becomes available, companies also can supplement their responses. Some of the most effective actions in response to reports of harm posted on saferproducts.gov have included:
· Responding within ten business days, regardless of whether the report has been investigated fully
· Noting an investigation has just begun and will be supplemented promptly as additional information becomes available
· Supplementing responses promptly and regularly as more information becomes known
· Advising consumers to contact customer service and/or provide the company with the product for inspection of the reported harm
· Communicating directly with the CPSC separately and offline instead of on the public website
· Posting nothing online if the consumer has already contacted the company about the incident but advising the CPSC of this fact offline and promptly
· Stressing that all complaints are taken seriously and that the company seeks to investigate them to the fullest extent possible
· Where applicable, stating that the consumer failed to provide contact information or the product for inspection, which prevents the company from responding completely
· Confirming that the product recently was subjected to rigorous third-party, expert, or other testing and analysis and that no problems were found
· Explaining that the product is safe when used correctly (e.g., according to instructions and warnings)
NOTE: Take time to craft any responses on the safer products site and do not be condescending, infer that the consumer is wrong, etc., as consumers look to see how your company responds to safety or quality issues. Best to have the response reviewed internally before posting.
If you still need to do so, please search for your company products on safer products.gov and regularly monitor the site so you can promptly respond to any reports. Search for unsafe products.
Comply PRO+ encourages company registration, and you can sign up right from the SaferProducts.gov section in settings.