Are Costco snorkels dangerous?

On Behalf of | Oct 6, 2021 | Product Liability |

Through the Consumer Product Safety Commission, a recall for snorkels carried by Costco has been issued. Huish Outdoors encourages residents of West Virginia to destroy any Oceanic Adult Dry Top Snorkel product because it has a flaw that increases the risk of drowning. This product was solely sold through Costco, so it can’t be bought anywhere else. It’s not only recalled; it’s also banned.

The bottom-purge valve

To avoid product liability, makers of snorkels need to safely engineer a bottom-purge valve. This valve is a one-way outlet for water to pass out. The valve is situated at the bottom of the snorkel where the force of gravity can go to work. Enabling water to leak out of the snorkel is necessary because water will backflow otherwise. Without this valve working properly, water builds up and could potentially enter the lungs. When divers are deep, this is a severe hazard.

Improper leaks and negative pressure

Though designed to release water, improper seals within the bottom-purge value may allow water to enter from the outside. The manufacturer said that the Oceanic snorkel doesn’t “deliver the performance expected” and could let in water. Here’s what you must do if you have an Oceanic Adult Dry Top:

• Stop using it immediately, regardless of the circumstances.
• When possible, destroy the entire product by cutting its tubing in half.
• Contact Huish Outdoors for a safer replacement.
• Inform anyone who is potentially at risk of a malfunction.

The risks of product liability

Reports of at least 13 people experiencing a malfunction have already been linked to Oceanic’s flawed snorkel. A business like this with a product malfunction often incurs unintentional liability. Oceanic could have faced ongoing lawsuits without the proper recall.