$715,000 Settlement in 'Buggies' Recall Case

The Consumer Product Safety Commission has provisionally accepted the settlement agreement and civil penalty from Bad Boy Enterprises, LLC of Natchez, Miss., in connection with unintended acceleration in Classic Buggies off-road vehicles.

Bad Boy Enterprises, LLC of Natchez, Miss., is settling a Consumer Product Safety Commission case involving about 9,300 Classic Buggies that were recalled beginning in October 2009 because of an unintended acceleration problem, according to a Sept. 22 notice published by the commission. The case involved two rounds of recalls, the second by BB Buggies Inc., which had acquired some of Bad Boy's assets, according to the company's recall notice, in which BB Buggies said it had received 27 additional reports of unexpected acceleration, including reports of arm and leg fractures.

The expanded recall involved all Bad Boy Classic off-road utility vehicles manufactured from early 2003 through May 2010. They were sold by authorized dealers nationwide from spring 2003 through June 2010 for about $10,000, according to the company.

CPSC staff alleged Bad Boy's Buggies manufactured and distributed from 2003 to October 2009 are defective because they can accelerate suddenly during use or when the ignition is in the idle position. Bad Boy received complaints beginning in April 2005 and later developed new software to remedy the problem but did not notify the commission as required about the complaints, according to the staff. The notice says Bad Boy made two types of Buggies that were recalled in October 2009 and December 2010 after the company received more than 50 complaints.

Bad Boy denies the Buggies contain a defect that could create a substantial product hazard or create an unreasonable risk of serious injury or death, and it also denies violating the requirement to inform the commission immediately, the notice says.

BB Buggies' expanded recall notice promised owners that a new accelerator pedal assembly would be installed at no cost to them. "It is very important that you have the repair completed. The reported incidents of unintended acceleration may have resulted from water damage to the old pedal assembly, which could cause the unintended acceleration and crash hazard," this notice stated.

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