HOUSTON, Dec. 18, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The company that packaged millions of cans of WD-40 claims the popular consumer product has a fatal design defect, and in federal court has now accused WD-40 Company of endangering millions of consumers.
Houston-based IQ Products Company ("IQ") packaged WD-40 aerosol products for over fifty years. In 2010, a WD-40 aerosol can exploded on IQ's production line, triggering an internal scientific investigation that exposed evidence of fraud by WD-40 Company. A subsequent investigation by IQ exposed the claimed design defect, which IQ believes poses a real danger to consumers.
"We have records that confirm blatant corporate malfeasance by WD-40 Company, and this fraud has been knowingly perpetrated since at least May 2012 on the supplier community, the retail merchants, and millions of unsuspecting consumers," says Yohanne Gupta, CEO and director of R&D at IQ. "When the Courts confirm this fraud, WD-40 Company would be liable for substantial fines and penalties, including imprisonment, as required by law."
For the last three years, IQ has been burdened with storing more than 1.5 million cans of quarantined WD-40 aerosol cans in their Houston warehouse, refusing to ship the products because of the design defect. In their lawsuit, IQ claims the cans are more susceptible to explode, potentially resulting in serious burn or shrapnel injury. There are more than 30 million cans of WD-40 aerosol cans in homes and businesses across the globe.
"The public will be surprised to learn that we have evidence that WD-40 Company never conducted any proper scientific research and development on its aerosol products," says Gupta.
In 2012, after WD-40 Company executives ignored repeated warnings, IQ complied with federal law and promptly reported the design defect to the Department of Transportation ("DOT") and Consumer Product Safety Commission. Mr. Charles Betts, the Director of DOT's Standards & Rulemaking Division in Washington, D.C. agreed with IQ that deformed WD-40 aerosol cans violate federal law and cannot legally be manufactured or shipped. DOT Enforcement Division bureaucrats ignored their own engineers and federal regulations, finding no reason to warn the public.
As a result, IQ has taken the rare step of filing a federal lawsuit against the DOT, accusing federal officials of failing to protect consumers from these defective WD-40 aerosol products. The lawsuit says tens of millions of WD-40 aerosol cans on store shelves and in the hands of unsuspecting consumers "should be immediately recalled, as required by law." IQ points out that the federal government has a history of sweeping consumer scandals under the rug.
"The DOT has failed, yet again, to protect the American consumer," says Mr. Gupta. "We look forward to uncovering the ineptitude and corruption within the Enforcement Division of the DOT that endangers all consumers. In addition, this litigation will help uncover the fraud and gross malfeasance perpetrated by the WD-40 Company. We submit that this WD-40 scandal is larger than the Volkswagen Emissions story currently making headlines across the country."
A distinguished NASA astronaut has conducted an independent investigation. Dr. Leroy Chiao, a chemical engineer, former Space Station Commander, and Asst. Professor at Rice University and Baylor College of Medicine, says he was "astounded by the fact that WD-40 has ignored IQ's advice to easily correct the design defect. The investigation of the design defect and the simplicity of the cure when coupled with inaction by WD-40 cause us great concern as engineers and disappointment as consumers."
"Integrity is more important to IQ Products Company than profit," says Gupta. "WD-40 executives claim this is just a three-year-old dispute over a new contract, but they are misleading the public and missing the point. IQ is a group of honest engineers and scientists. We will never knowingly endanger the public, which is why we have refused to ship over a million and a half cans of WD-40 aerosol products that do not comply with federal hazard materials regulations. Even one avoidable accident is one too many, and our conscience will not allow that. We feel we are obligated to warn the public."
Dolcefino Consulting, the investigative communications firm run by former Houston TV Investigative Reporter Wayne Dolcefino has created a website to provide access to additional information, including access to legal documents, photographs of deformed WD-40 aerosol cans, and more at www.WD40Fraud.com.
SOURCE IQ Products Company