It seems that several automakers are still struggling to contain the scourge of vehicle fires.
This week, GM announced the next step in a recall process for select 2017-2019 model year Chevrolet Bolt electric vehicles. The automaker originally issued the recall back in November following reports that the vehicles’ high-voltage batteries can catch fire if fully charged or near full capacity. Now, the company says it has a solution that will fix the issue.
GM says dealers will use newly developed diagnostic tools to identify problems in vehicle batteries so that faulty assemblies can be replaced. Owners can visit a Chevrolet EV dealer to have the service performed, and technicians will also remove a 90% charging limitation that was put in place via a software patch.
GM says it will make its diagnostic software standard in all its future electric vehicles.
Electric bikes that wouldn’t stop get recalled
A Brooklyn-based producer of electric folding bicycles issued a recall this week because of a software malfunction that wouldn’t let users stop.
Brompton Bicycle recalled 600 of its products and explained that the glitch caused the affected bikes’ electric systems to keep the motors running even when riders stopped pedaling. This caused continuous forward momentum, increasing the risk of a fall and injury.
Owners are being urged to stop using the bikes immediately and to contact an authorized Brompton Electric dealer for a free software upgrade that will fix the problem. The bikes were sold nationwide between June 2020, and March 2021.
Scented hand sanitizers recalled for containing harmful chemical
At the beginning of the year, health officials issued a warning to consumers about certain hand sanitizers produced in Mexico because they contained methanol -- or wood alcohol. Exposure to the chemical has been linked to a laundry list of serious health issues, including nausea, vomiting, seizures, comas, and even death. Now, it looks like another company produced hand sanitizers with the same toxic ingredient.
Scentsational Soaps & Candles, Inc. recalled several lots of its hand sanitizer products because tests revealed the presence of methanol, benzene, and acetaldehyde. The products were distributed across the U.S. at Ulta Beauty, TJ Maxx, and Marshalls retail locations.
The company says it has notified direct customers and has asked for the products to be removed from store shelves immediately. Customers who have one of the affected products listed in the FDA’s recall announcement are being urged to stop using them and return them to the place of purchase.
Mercedes-Benz recalls over 12,000 vehicles over electrical issue
Mercedes-Benz USA has issued a recall for 12,327 model year 2021 vehicles because of a potentially dangerous electrical issue.
The company says a faulty electrical contact found in the seat position switch can prevent the driver and passenger airbags from deploying and the seat belt force limiters from activating like they should during a crash. If those things were to happen, a driver or passenger could be seriously injured or even killed in an accident that otherwise may not be as serious.
The automaker says it is notifying vehicle owners and dealers so that the seat position switches in affected vehicles can be replaced free of charge. The recall is expected to go into effect on May 31.
Thyroid medication recalled for not being strong enough
Back in September, Acella Pharmaceuticals recalled one lot of its NP Thyroid Tablet products because tests revealed that they were sub-potent -- meaning that they didn’t deliver enough of a key ingredient to be as effective as advertised. Now, it looks like that’s happening all over again.
The company issued another recall for several lots of products this week because of the same exact issue. The company cited tests showing that the products contained less than 90% of the labeled amount of liothyronine and/or levothyroxine.
This is a potentially dangerous problem because consumers who depend on the medication to treat conditions like hypothyroidism could have experienced increased symptom severity. In at-risk individuals like seniors and pregnant women, the consequences could have ranged from miscarriage to stunted development and even cardiovascular issues.
Acella says it is notifying consignees to discontinue recalled lots of its products and is arranging for returns. It advises consumers who are taking affected medications to stop using them and to work with a health care provider for further guidance and/or a replacement prescription.