Are all products safety tested before going to market?

On Behalf of | Mar 25, 2024 | Product Liability |

Consumers who purchase products assume they will be as safe as possible. They don’t expect companies to try to skirt safety guidelines. They probably believe that there are oversights for many of the products on the market.

Unfortunately, many products hit the shelves without ever going through any type of standardized testing or compliance verification. While the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) oversees many products, there are limits to what it can do.

The challenge of safety standards in consumer products

With more than 15,000 categories of products under its watch, the CPSC oversees a vast market. Only a fraction of these products are governed by mandatory safety standards. This creates a burden of safety that often falls on voluntary standards or no standards at all.

Navigating the gap between mandatory and voluntary standards

While certain products like bunk beds and bicycle helmets are required to meet specific safety standards, the majority are not. This discrepancy leads to a situation where some manufacturers may choose not to adhere to voluntary standards, which can leave consumers at risk. Additionally, products without specific standards, including newer innovations, can enter the market without rigorous safety testing.

Consumer expectations versus reality

A survey reveals a significant gap between consumer expectations and the reality of product safety standards. Most Americans believe that products, especially those that cost $75 or more, meet required safety standards and have been tested for safety before being sold. The reality of voluntary standards and the lack of mandatory testing requirements for many products challenge this belief.

Consumers who suffer an injury because of a product may take legal action provided they used the product as intended. This can help to offset medical and other expenses related to the issue.