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Jack stands are used by both professional and shade tree mechanics to provide a stable platform for elevated vehicles. If used properly, jack stands can make auto repairs much easier to complete. Recently, Harbor Freight, a discount equipment retailer with 1,000 stores located in 48 states, recalled jack stands manufactured by Pittsburgh Automotive. The issue? These jack stands can collapse, leading to possible injury or even death.

Harbor Freight Recall

The recalled jack stands, listed in the recall as items 56371, 61196 and 61197, are 3 ton and 6 ton capacity stands, and were manufactured between June 13, 2013 and November 22, 2019. There are 454,000 units included in the recall. If you own jack stands purchased from Harbor Freight, please check the label on the jack stands to see if yours are part of the recall. Harbor Freight is urging customers to discontinue use immediately and return them to Harbor Freight for a store gift card. If you are unable to read the item number on the jack stand, it is wise to refrain from using them until you can contact the manufacturer or your local Harbor Freight.

Manufacturing Defects

When we purchase an item, we presume that the item has been thoroughly tested for safety. This is especially important in items where improper or faulty manufacturing can lead to serious injury or death. In the case of faulty jack stands, a manufacturing defect could lead to catastrophic consequences. The average vehicle weighs over 2,500 pounds. This much weight would seriously injure or perhaps kill a person who is trapped under a falling car.

Jack Stand Safety Measures

If you use jack stands, it is important to follow these safety tips:

  • Avoid working alone. Most auto maintenance injuries occur when someone is working alone. Having a partner adds an extra layer of safety. If an accident occurs, your partner will be able to call for help.
  • Never elevate a car on uneven ground. Make sure you only perform car maintenance on level ground. This will evenly distribute the weight across the jack stands and lessen the possibility of a collapse.
  • Know how to properly use the jack stands. Read the instructions carefully before attempting to use the stands. This knowledge could potentially save your life.
  • Make sure you have all necessary equipment. Jack stands have to be used in conjunction with a quality jack. If you are using the jack on dirt or grass, place the jack on plywood to add more stability.
  • Stabilize the wheels. Place a block of wood, rubber or metal in front and behind the wheels as you lift the car with the jack and place the car on jack stands.
  • Perform a security check. Before you begin your work under the car, double check the jack stands for stability. Gently shake the vehicle to make sure it is properly placed on the jack stands.

Auto maintenance is a necessary part of life, and if you enjoy completing it on your own, be sure to take safety precautions to avoid accidents.

If you or a loved one have been injured by a faulty Harbor Freight recalled jack stand, contact Ligori & Ligori today. Our team will evaluate your case and explain your options to you. You may be entitled to compensation for your jack stand-related injury. Call us today or visit us to schedule your consultation.

Posted on behalf of Ligori & Ligori Attorneys at Law

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