WASHINGTON, Nov. 8, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is announcing that HSN Inc., of St. Petersburg, Florida, has agreed to pay a $16 million civil penalty. The settlement agreement, which has been provisionally accepted by CPSC, resolves CPSC’s charges that HSN knowingly failed to immediately report to CPSC, as required by law, that its Joy Mangano-brand My Little Steamer and My Little Steamer Go Mini contained a defect that could create a substantial product hazard or created an unreasonable risk of serious injury to consumers.
By the end of 2012 and continuing into 2019, HSN received numerous reports that the steamers would spray, expel, and/or leak hot water while in use, resulting in serious and permanent injuries, a limited number of which constituted grievous bodily injury. Despite possessing information that reasonably supported the conclusion that the steamers contained a defect that could create a substantial product hazard or created an unreasonable risk of serious injury, HSN did not immediately report to the Commission. By the time HSN filed an initial report with the Commission, HSN had received approximately 400 complaints of the steamers spraying or expelling hot water and approximately 700 additional reports of leaks, resulting in at least 91 reports of injury and 29 insurance claims alleging injuries, including reports of second and third-degree burns, scarring and one report of partial hearing loss. In addition, from information in HSN Online Reviews, HSN had knowledge of approximately 500 complaints of the steamers spraying or expelling hot water and approximately 150 complaints of leaks, including 87 reports of injury. HSN and the Commission jointly announced a recall of the steamers on May 26, 2021.
In addition to the $16 million penalty, the settlement agreement requires HSN to maintain internal controls and procedures designed to ensure compliance with the Consumer Product Safety Act, including enhancements to its compliance program. HSN has also agreed to submit, for a period of three years, annual reports regarding its compliance program, internal controls, and internal audits of the effectiveness of compliance policies, procedures, systems, and training.
By a 4 to 0 vote, the Commission provisionally accepted the settlement agreement, subject to public comment. Elizabeth L. Jones, a Trial Attorney in the Division of Enforcement and Litigation, represented the Commission in this enforcement action.
About the U.S. CPSC
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risk of injury or death associated with the use of thousands of types of consumer products. Deaths, injuries, and property damage from consumer product-related incidents cost the nation more than $1 trillion annually. CPSC’s work to ensure the safety of consumer products has contributed to a decline in the rate of injuries associated with consumer products over the past 50 years.
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Release Number: 24-020
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SOURCE U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission