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Product Recall – Urgent Issues List

URGENT ISSUES -- POSSIBLE PRODUCT RECALL/SAFETY SITUATION

This sheet is intended to offer a short form agenda of issues to be addressed if your business starts to suspect that it has a serious safety or product efficacy issue to deal with.

INFORMATION GATHERING

  • capture field and factory information re faults --what , how , how many , when , batch details , samples/as many as possible , photographs , inspection reports , common factors , affected population 
  • beware admissions in internal /external documents (including emails) before position is established and advised on

SAFETY RISK ASSESSMENT

  • once information is sufficiently available assess severity and likelihood of injury using accepted methodology

NOTIFYING REGULATORS

  • Once risk assessed and lawyers have advised consider whether obliged to notify
  • Be prepared to advise what corrective / recall action is being taken and why or why none is appropriate

LAWYERS

  • Involve your lawyers from the start to guide on:-

o         safety and recall obligations ;

o        use of privilege to avoid open admissions that can be used against you

o        use of privilege to cloak fault investigations

o        documenting fault and scale  for loss recovery or defence purposes

o        clearance of PR releases/announcements/recall notices

PR

  • if the issue is likely to be largescale or serious involve PR professionals to support communication with press /customers/government etc
  • ensure that a point of contact for all media enquiries is established
  • brief receptionists to direct all queries to the point of contact
  • consider material to include on website

INSURERS

  • notify any liability or recall insurers urgently
  • seek to keep insurers abreast and bought in to any recall activity

TEAM

  • assemble a senior crisis team to be responsible for and to co-ordinate the handling of the issue

PRODUCT

  • consider quarantining product that is suspect in the factory /warehouse /distribution chain while information is gathered and assessed
  • seek to recover and store in conditions where it will not degrade fault examples / all recalled product if possible and practical to evidence any recovery claim

Key Contacts