BUFFALO, N.Y. – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has ordered a recall of sunflower seeds sold in stores across more than 24 states, including New York.
According to a federal spokesperson, some of the seeds may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, a species of bacteria which can cause serious infections and illnesses.
The new order expands a recall already in place for kernels produced by SunOpta, a multi-national food and mineral company. Seeds bagged between February 1, 2016 and April 21, 2016 are impacted along the following product lines:
Planters Sunflower Kernels
Dakota’s Best Biggy’z Roasted and Salted Kernels
“The quality and safety of the food we produce and the ingredients we provide are the highest priority for us,” SunOpta released in a statement. “Therefore, we are voluntarily recalling a limited number of sunflower kernel products that have the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. We have isolated the production window to a short timeframe and are working with the FDA and customers to control and dispose of affected product. We are aware of one customer complaint that did not involve an illness, and we are not aware of any consumer issues due to consumption of this product.”
A related recall also warns of listeria contamination in sunflower kernels sold in Wegmans and Tops grocery stores between March 11, 2016 and May 21, 2016.
First Source, a bulk distributor of candy and specialty items, issued the recall for the following products due to Listeria concerns:
15 LBS Alpine Valley Fitness Mix with lot code BD 161021
15 LBS Alpine Valley Yogurt Fruit/Nut Mix with lot code BD 161261
Alpine Tub “Roasted & Salted Sunflower Kernels” 10.25oz with Best By 03-24-17
Alpine Tub “Roasted & Unsalted Sunflower Kernels” 10.25oz with Best By 3-23-17, 3-30-17, 5-3-17
Wegmans square tub “Fitness Mix” 20oz with Best By 12-24-16
Wegmans square tub “Sunshine Cranberry Delight” 20oz with Best By 12/15/16, 1-7-17, 2-9-17
Wegmans Fitness Mix, scale label UPC begins with 279301
Wegmans Yogurt Fruit & Nut Mix, scale label UPC begins with 279375
Wegmans Cranberry Sunshine, scale label UPC begins with 279022
Wegmans Roasted Sunflower Seeds with Salt, scale label UPC begins with 279973 (available in bulk and on Trail Mix Bar)
Wegmans Roasted Sunflower Seeds, no Salt, scale label UPC begins with 279629 (available in bulk and on Trail Mix Bar)
15 LBS Alpine Valley Sunshine Cranberry Delight with Lot Code BD 161021 and BD 161261
Flave Fitness Mix 8oz with Best By 4-20-17 and 05-02-17
Flave Tropical Trail Mix 8oz with Best By 4-20-17
Flave Oriental Mix 6oz with Best By 3-10-17 and 4-21-17
Flave Sunflower Seeds 7.5oz with Best By 4-20-17
Gonzo 2 Go “Sunshine Cranberry Delight” 4.5oz with Best By 2-10-17
Gonzo 2 Go “Fitness Mix” 5oz with Best By 1-7-17
Stewarts Sunshine Cranberry Delite 5oz with Best By 1-18-17
Tops square tub “Roasted & Unsalted Sunflower Kernels” 10.25 with Best By 3-30-17, 5-3-17
Tops square tub “Roasted & Salted Sunflower Kernels” 10.25 with Best By 1-28-17
SunOpta supplies sunflower kernels for First Source products.
So far, no illnesses have officially been reported but a Buffalo listeria lawyer at Cellino & Barnes says the illness can be severe and sometimes deadly.
“Consumers who purchased any of the recalled items should immediately dispose of them or return them to the store for a refund,” Buffalo listeria lawyer Steve Barnes said. “Children, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems could suffer if they contract this foodborne illness.”
Listeria can cause serious infections and symptoms include high fever, stiffness, abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea, and a severe headache.
If you’ve experienced any of these symptoms and believe they are related to listeria-tainted sunflower seeds, contact a Buffalo listeria lawyer at Cellino & Barnes today for a free consultation.
NEW YORK – If you own a Mercedes diesel, your vehicle may have had a “defeat device” used to cheat emissions testing, a new lawsuit claims.
The automaker, owned by Daimler, has denied the accusation but it wouldn’t be the first time a company has denied using the software.
Volkswagen famously equipped millions of diesel vehicles with software designed to make it appear that a vehicle was operating within emissions standards. Following emissions tests, the “Clean Diesel” vehicles would emit up to 40 times more pollutants.
According to the complaint filed in February, new tests have found Mercedes BlueTEC cars emit greater amounts of nitrogen oxide in road tests that it does in controlled lab tests. The research suggests the luxury vehicle company is implementing a “defeat device” similar to the one Volkswagen had used.
A Brooklyn Volkswagen emission lawyer at Cellino & Barnes says the cheating software, if it is installed in a vehicle, misleads consumers and could be dangerous to your health.
“Volkswagen marketed their vehicles as ‘Clean Diesel’ cars when they were likely producing more pollution than many other models in Brooklyn,” Volkswagen emission lawyer Steve Barnes said. “Currently, pollution can be attributed to about 3-million deaths each year.”
Daimler released a statement on Friday to address the accusations in the new legal complaint against them:
“We consider this class action lawsuit to be unfounded. Our position remains unchanged: A component that inadmissibly reduces emissions is not used in Mercedes Benz vehicles.”
Volkswagen also did not admit it was using test-cheating devices in its Clean Diesel cars until the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency formally announced proof of the shady strategy in September of 2015. At that time, the EPA had already accused Volkswagen of deliberately dodging regulations since 2008.
The new complaint against Daimler claims the automaker knowingly programmed its BlueTEC filtration systems to emit illegal levels of nitrogen oxide in low temperatures.
The EPA has since requested information from Mercedes regarding these accusations but it has not officially launched an investigation.
Brooklyn Volkswagen emission lawyers at Cellino & Barnes say about 11 million VWs have rigged exhaust emissions. If the allegations against Daimler are proven to be true, many more customers could be affected.
MELVILLE, N.Y. – There is a good chance your vehicle is under recall. Recently, we’ve seen an unusually high number of auto recalls – in 2014 alone, 64 million cars were recalled in the United States. That was a new record and due to Volkswagen test-cheating software and the ongoing Takata airbag fiasco, dealers and repairmen could be busy for months, if not years.
It is now estimated that nearly one of every five cars in the U.S. currently needs repairs due to an open recall, according to a new study from Carfax. More than 47 million vehicles have at leat one unfixed recall, the company’s annual research found.
“Vehicles are often recalled because faulty equipment can lead to a car accident or serious injury,” Long Island defective product attorney Steve Barnes said. “Unfortunately, some companies don’t take this action fast enough and several people can be severely hurt or killed because of defective equipment on a car.”
During 2013, several automakers began large recalls due to faulty Takata-made airbags. One car company stated that it knew of more than 100 injuries and eight deaths that were directly related to the airbags. However, some reports state that problems with the airbags may have begun in the late 1990s or early 2000s.
In 2014, General Motors recalled around 800,000 cars due to faulty ignition switches, which could shut off the engine while the vehicle was in operation. This seemingly random shut down of the vehicle would completely turn off the engine and prevent the airbags from inflating. The recall grew throughout the year to reach 30 million vehicles worldwide but not before at least 124 people were killed and many others injured.
Many GM workers have since admitted that they knew of the faulty ignition switch for at least a decade before a single vehicle was recalled. The company continues to face lawsuits from families who have been injured due to the defective ignition switches.
“If you suspect a defective part caused an injury or a car crash, report it because it may not be under recall yet,” Barnes said. “With over 47 million unfixed cars on the road, there’s also a chance that someone else’s car malfunctioned and caused a crash – either way, it’s important to have an experienced team of litigators on your side to protect your rights.”
The Carfax study also found that SUVs and minivans were most likely to have an unfixed recall. Long Island defective product attorneys suggest checking your vehicles for active recalls on a regular basis and getting them fixed immediately if they do require maintenance.
NEW YORK – If you own a car made by Volkswagen, you likely heard about the company’s dirty secret: their “Clean Diesel” vehicles are not so clean after all.
In fact, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says regulators recently uncovered a computer program that was intentionally installed in thousands of Volkswagen vehicles that would cheat global emissions tests – hiding the fact that the “Clean Diesel” vehicles actually emit up to 40 times more pollutants.
A New York Volkswagen emission lawyer at Cellino & Barnes says more than 600,000 diesel vehicles were sold in America and many owners are taking the automaker to court.
“If you own or lease one of these ‘Clean Diesel’ vehicles, you might feel mislead and victimized,” New York Volkswagen emission lawyer Ross Cellino said. “Owners could also experience decreased value and suffer real financial damages if it’s found that the automaker lied and cheated in order to sell their cars.”
According to Reuters, dozens of Volkswagen shareholders are also driving to court. They plan to get compensated for their losses after shares plunged due to its reported test-cheating.
Volkswagen (VW) shares have plummeted in value – an estimated $24 billion drop since the company admitted to misleading regulators in September.
The German automaker has yet to issue a recall for the vehicles affected. According to the California Air Resources Board, Volkswagen’s proposals to recall its vehicles have been inadequate. The Environmental Protection Agency added that VW’s recall plan ‘unacceptable.’
Although federal regulators say the affected vehicles are safe to drive for now, New York Volkswagen emissions attorneys at Cellino & Barnes say owners and lessees have a lot to lose. Already, the value of VW’s “Clean Diesel” vehicles has diminished significantly and any recall would likely have severe impacts on performance and fuel economy.
The list of vehicles connected with emissions cheating software now includes:
ROCHESTER, N.Y. – You may have seen one and thought, ‘wow, cool!’ But self-balancing scooters (aka hoverboards) are hot. So hot that they’re catching on fire and sparking safety bans across the nation.
They’re one of the most-wanted items on Amazon this holiday season but hoverboards are grabbing headlines because they keep exploding.
This week, three major US airlines banned hoverboards on their airplanes – stating the transportation device will not be accepted as either carry-on or checked luggage. United, Delta, and American cited “poorly labeled, powerful lithium-ion batteries” were at the heart of the issue.
“Manufacturers are obligated to meet safety requirements, but there are shortcuts and many companies are using these shortcuts to sell consumers unsafe products,” Ross Cellino, a Rochester defective product attorney said. “We’ve long known about the dangers of lithium-ion batteries but companies still market these items with little or no warning.”
In the early 2000’s, Apple and Dell issued recalls after laptops overheated and burst into flames. The fires were linked to the computers’ lithium ion batteries.
Nearly all hoverboards are made at a rapid pace in China with little thought of safety.
Adding to the risks, there are no global manufacturing standards – and fewer regulations. Many hoverboard makers have stated that their lithium ion batteries have been independently certified as “safe.” However, that may not be true.
“There are standards meant to protect consumers but many times, it’s up to producers to test their own products,” Cellino said. “In the past, manufacturers have lied to consumers and ignored safety so they can make more money.”
Federal regulators target specific imported products to detain. Although the strategy has its benefits, it can expose consumers to many unsafe imports that hit shelves in America.
Some electronics like hoverboards often have self-regulated safety standards. Even if the standards are not met, stores can legally stock and sell those products. However, some are deciding to avoid a potential public relations disaster.
Overstock is stepping back from selling hoverboards due to fire concerns and the Consumer Electronics show outright banned them.
However, the product remains a hot-seller. According to Ebay, it sold a hoverboard every 12 seconds on Cyber Monday. But there are questions whether these products are even legal:
The New York Police Department claims hoverboards are technically illegal in New York City, but not due to safety concerns.
According to the NYPD, hoverboards “are considered motor vehicles that cannot be registered with the Department of Motor Vehicles.”
NEW YORK – For parents, there’s no worse feeling than watching your child suffer an injury. Although many parents do everything they can to prevent injuries to their children, accidents still happen but a new report found that accidents occur more often than you may think.
Queens defective product attorneys at Cellino & Barnes say many injuries suffered by children are due to unsafe toys or items found around the house.
“Many toys have small parts – or they can break into small pieces, posing a choking hazard to many young children,” Ross Cellino, a Queens defective product attorney at Cellino & Barnes said. “Sometimes, toy makers don’t warn parents about these hazards even though they’re required to – so it’s always important to supervise young children.”
Many toys made for older children can be extremely hazardous to toddlers who aren’t yet aware of the risks. The Irish study found that 3 year-olds in households with other children and just one parent were most at risk of injury.
The study also determined:
-Boys were injured much more frequently than girls.
-Children who have parents with a health condition had a higher risk of injury
-Children who have parents with little to no formal education had a higher risk of injury
The report noted that “gender differences in activity levels and risk-taking behavior, gender socialization and gender-related patterns of parental or adult supervision” raised the risk for boys.
Several other studies examined the psychology behind parenting and found that most parents supervise children differently depending on their child’s gender – with boys receiving less supervision than girls.
“There are so many products on the market today that can be potentially dangerous to your children and under the wrong circumstances, a toddler can get severely injured,” Cellino said. “Supervising your child is the best way to reduce their risk of injury but sometimes supervision isn’t enough.”
Some toys are marketed as ‘safe products’ but defects can make them dangerous for young children. Many toy companies face lawsuits each year due to negligence or unreported hazards.
If your child is ever injured due to a dangerous toy or other household item, Queens defective product attorneys suggest contacting Cellino & Barnes immediately to discuss your legal options.
BUFFALO, N.Y. – If you’re a parent, you may have heard about the dangers of crib bumpers. Now, a new study has doctors concerned because there’s been a ‘significant’ spike in the number of infant deaths associated with crib bumpers and the study’s authors believe the numbers are still “dramatically” undercounted.
According to the latest study in the Journal of Pediatrics, crib bumpers have been linked to at least 48 suffocations in just the last seven years.
Buffalo defective product lawyers at Cellino & Barnes say the bumpers have been found to be so dangerous that they’re even banned in some places.
“Although there aren’t any federal regulations, these products can be dangerous for children in Buffalo,” defective product attorney Steve Barnes said. “They’ve been such a problem that companies are banned from selling these products in the city of Chicago and in the state of Maryland.”
Consumer Reports named crib bumpers one of the “13 dangerous baby products to avoid” in 2012. The report cited bumpers as a ‘suffocation hazard’ that could be linked to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
Designed to keep babies from hitting their heads on crib slats, many parents choose to purchase bumpers as a ‘protection.’ However, attorneys and doctors say bumpers serve no real purpose.
“Although infants can bump their heads on hard crib slats, it’s extremely uncommon to cause any serious injury,” Barnes said. “Injuries are more likely to occur when a child is smothered by the bumper, and these injuries can be deadly.”
There have also been several reports of older infants using the bumper to climb out of the crib, resulting in a potentially serious and sometimes deadly fall.
The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) represents the crib bedding industry. Following the recent study, JPMA released the following statement to CNN:
“JPMA affirms that when used according to manufacturer’s instructions, traditional crib bumpers that meet the ASTM Infant Bedding Standard assist parents in addressing their very real concerns about crib injuries including limb entrapment, head injury, contusions and abrasions.”
The association also mentioned a research report from 2013 that found crib bumpers have not been cited as the sole cause of an infant’s death.
However, many doctors disagree after researching and testing the bedding for three decades.
Buffalo defective product lawyers say parents should carefully research baby products before buying them.
“When you go to a baby store, there are several cribs with bumpers on display and some parents may assume they’re safe or the store wouldn’t be selling them,” Barnes said. “Convenience stores still sell cigarettes but it doesn’t mean they’re good for you – so it’s important to see all the information before making a purchase.”
Many doctors believe these baby products should not be sold in stores. If your child has been injured or killed in a crib with crib bumpers, contact a lawyer immediately to discuss your case for free.
BUFFALO, N.Y. – Hunters across the nation are spending their fall weekends in the woods but many of them may be at risk for serious falls that can result in injuries and even death because a popular tree stand has been found to be defective.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced the recall of several tree stand models made by Big Game and the Global Manufacturing Company. The CPSC said the stands use a cable assembly that can unexpectedly release – causing the stand (and whoever is on it) to fall.
Buffalo defective product attorneys at Cellino & Barnes said if a hunter is injured because the tree stand didn’t work properly, the manufacturer could be held liable for any injuries.
“Some of these tree stands can be placed 20 to 30 feet above the ground and a fall from that distance could be deadly,” Buffalo defective product attorney Steve Barnes said. “Hunters spent anywhere from $140 to $180 for each stand and they should expect a certain level of safety from that product.”
The CPSC said there have been reports of the cable assembly suddenly releasing and it has resulted in injuries to the user’s knee, hip and wrist. Another report of failure resulted in several fractures, a sprained shoulder and a broken vertebra.
Hunters are now being warned not to use these recalled stands until they receive free replacement cables from the manufacturer.
The recall affects about 12,200 Big Game climbing tree stands including these 2014 models:
CL050 – The Outlook with batch number 9B-0414
CL100-A – The Cobalt with batch numbers 9B-0214 and 9B-0514
CL500-AP – The Fusion with batch numbers 9B-0214 and 9B-0514
About 5,300 API Outdoors 2014 climbing tree stands were recalled with these batch numbers:
GCL300-A – The Marksman with batch numbers 9G-0114 and 9G-0614
Hunters who have been injured due to any malfunctioning tree stand should call a defective product attorney at Cellino & Barnes today for a free case evaluation.
Owners may also request free replacement cables by contacting the manufacturer.
NEW YORK – Volkswagen owners should be nervous, if not worried about recent news erupting from the German automaker regarding emissions testing. The carmaker recently admitted to installing software that was designed to cheat clean emissions testing in the United States and around the globe.
Under fire from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and governments around the world, the resulting recall will be the largest in VW history – affecting about 11 million cars. The recall is expected to be completed by the end of 2016 but the automaker could face huge lawsuits and according to the EPA, up to $18 billion in fines.
A defective product attorney at Cellino & Barnes says nearly 500,000 vehicles were sold in the United States and they could affect the resale value and the health of millions.
“These vehicles were marketed as ‘clean diesel’ cars to thousands of families in New York,” defective product attorney Steve Barnes said. “Many families bought these cars because they were told the vehicles were better for the environment – now we’re discovering that advertising may not have just been false; we’re finding out these cars were a health hazard.”
The EPA said the cars would emit as much as 40 times the legal limit of pollutants during normal driving. During official emissions testing, the software was programmed to switch engines to a cleaner mode to pass the test.
Class-action lawsuits have already been filed by Volkswagen and Audi owners. Many of the claims cite fraud, breach of contract and a diminished value of the recalled diesel vehicles, which generally sell at a higher price over standard gasoline vehicles.
Lawyers say the cars may have fuel efficiency problems and degraded horsepower after the recalled vehicles are fixed.
“If all the allegations are true, consumers were not only filling their homes and neighborhoods with pollution; they were getting ripped off too,” Barnes said.
The vehicles subject to the recall include:
2012-2015 VW Beetles
2013-2015 VW Beetle Convertibles
2009-2015 VW Jettas
2009-2014 VW Jetta SportWagens
2009-2015 VW Passats
2010-2015 VW Golfs
2015 VW Golf SportWagens
2010-2015 Audi A3s
If you or a family member bought one of these vehicles, it may be equipped with fraudulent emissions software, which is illegal.
NEW YORK – You don’t have to turn the key anymore to get the engine revving in your car anymore. We have buttons for that. What was once a sci-fi idea is now the norm but consumer safety advocates are warning car owners about the dangers associated with keyless ignitions.
Several people have walked away from their vehicles, taking the keys with them but they forget to turn off the engine. Long Island defective product attorneys say this common mistake can be deadly.
“Some people have died because they accidentally left their car running in an attached garage on Long Island,” defective product attorney Steve Barnes said. “The carbon monoxide from the engine can build up inside the garage and sometimes even seep into your home – and this gas is deadly.”
Many cars have no alarms to detect the build-up of carbon monoxide and most don’t have an automatic shut-off. An ABC News investigation found it took just two and a half hours for the carbon monoxide to build-up to lethal levels. Experts say a person could feel the effects immediately and possibly lose consciousness within just five minutes.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently proposed a requirement that would equip all vehicles with an audible alarm but officials have not mandated this piece of equipment. Currently, public comments are under review and NHTSA officials plan to make a final ruling in February.
“Carbon monoxide is odorless, colorless and deadly,” Barnes said. “Unfortunately, several people have died because they didn’t receive any kind of warning that there were elevated levels of the gas entering their garage and home – that seems unacceptable.”
At least 13 people have died because automakers concealed the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning, according to a new lawsuit. Nearly 30 consumers filed the lawsuit against 10 major car manufacturers in federal court, accusing the companies of failing to warn drivers about the “deadly defect” associated with keyless ignition.
Nearly 30 complaints were submitted to the NHTSA since 2009. Since then, several lawsuits have been filed claiming automakers knew about the risks associated with keyless ignition and instead of addressing the dangers, companies continued to market their vehicles as ‘safe.’
Barnes and the Long Island defective product attorneys at Cellino & Barnes hope the lawsuits force automakers to design safer vehicles and equip cars and trucks with technology to alert people of rising carbon monoxide levels.
“Unfortunately, many families have already suffered an injury or a loss due to carbon monoxide poisoning,” Barnes said. “These families could be entitled to significant compensation because these accidents could have been prevented.”
If you or someone you know has suffered an injury or wrongful death due to carbon monoxide, Long Island defective product attorneys at Cellino & Barnes offer free case evaluations. Contact a lawyer today to discuss your claim.
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