Harbor Freight Tools USA Inc., has now issued multiple recalls of their popular Pittsburgh Automotive 3 Ton and 6 Ton Heavy Duty Steel Jack Stands. Additionally, the Pittsburgh 3 replacement stand underwent a recall as well.
The jack stand recall was issued in cooperation with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Harbor Freight Pittsburgh Automotive Recall Timeline
- May 3, 2020 – Harbor Freight recalled more than 1.2 million Pittsburgh Automotive 3 Ton Heavy Duty Steel Jack Stands.
- May 20, 2020 – Harbor Freight recalled approximately 454,000 Pittsburgh Automotive 6 Ton Heavy Duty Steel Jack Stands.
- July 7, 2020 – Harbor Freight recalled the replacement for the previously recalled Pittsburgh Automotive 3 Ton Heavy Duty Jack Stands.
The NHTSA estimates that approximately 5% of the recalled units will suffer from this defect.
Why have the jack stands been recalled?
The Harbor Freight recall announcement said that there is a potential, while under load and with a shift in weight, for the pawl to disengage from the extension lifting post, allowing the stand to drop suddenly, with the potential to injure or crush a person under the lifted car or truck.
More specifically, for certain units, the ratchet teeth on the jack stand lifting extension post may inconsistently engage the pawl to a sufficient depth.
This condition could cause serious injury for people near or under a lifted vehicle, and/or damage to property. In addition, a defective, suddenly collapsing jack stand can also cause an unfortunate death.
Harbor Freight also sells other jack stands made by other manufacturers. According to the Harbor Freight website, they are in the process of evaluating the other product lines to determine if they are also defective but are “delayed by work restrictions caused by COVID-19”.
Pittsburgh Automotive Branded Jack Stands Sold by Harbor Freight Tied to Chinese Manufacturing Errors
The Pittsburgh Automotive jack stands were not actually manufactured by Harbor Freight but were sourced from a Chinese company called Jiaxing Golden Roc Tools Co., Ltd. Harbor Freight has determined that the problem with the Pittsburgh Automotive jack stands was that the company in China was using aging tooling and equipment.
How do I determine if my Harbor Freight Pittsburgh Automotive jack stand has been recalled?
- Item # 56371 – these jack stands can be identified by checking the item number found on the label on the top of each jack stand.
- Item #’s 61196 and 61197 – jack stands can be identified by checking the item number found on the yellow part of the label on the base of each jack stand.
- Item # 56373 – jack stands can be identified by checking the item number found on the yellow part of the label on the base of each jack stand.
Harbor Freight Recalls Pittsburgh 3 Replacement Stand
On July 7, 2020 Harbor Freight CEO Eric Smidt announced the replacement for the previously recalled Pittsburgh 3 jack stand was being recalled as well. A welding defect in a number of the replacements was discovered after the initial recall of the jack stands. Smidt announced in a message to customers he was “disappointed and embarrassed” to have to recall yet another defective product.
If you own these jack stands or any of the jack stands in our original recall, whether or not you have had an issue with them, please stop using them immediately and bring them back to your local Harbor Freight Store for a full cash refund or store credit,” Smidt said.
The other jack stand replacements are not affected at this time, but if consumers are concerned about the one they already own, Harbor Freight allow them to be returned as well.
Harbor Freight Jack Stand Class Action Lawsuit
A class action lawsuit was recently filed against Harbor Freight concerning the defective “Pittsburgh Automotive” jack stands that have been recalled. The class action was filed in the Central District of California because the defendant (Harbor Freight) lists its principal place of business as Calabasas, California. The amount in controversy exceeds $5,000,000.00.
This particular lawsuit states, “The jack stands are unsafe due to inconsistencies in manufacturing caused by aging in the tooling. These inconsistencies make the stands inherently dangerous because they can collapse under a load causing danger to nearby individuals and damage to property. In addition, the three-ton jack stands had inconsistent location indexing of the pawl armature hole.”
The plaintiffs below are just one of hundreds or thousands of individuals nationwide whose property has been damaged by the defective jack stands.
Plaintiff One Story
In late 2018 or early 2019, one of the plaintiffs was using the stands to hold up his 2003 Cadillac CTS to bleed the brakes. The defective stands collapsed and the Cadillac fell, causing damage to the frame of the vehicle. Thankfully, the plaintiff was not injured in the incident, but his vehicle was seriously damaged, and he could no longer use the jack stands.
Plaintiff Two Story
Approximately six months before the filing of this complaint, the plaintiff placed his 2007 Honda Civic hybrid on the jack stands to replace an engine cover on the bottom of the vehicle. After placing it on the jack stands, he came out from under the car, and it fell, damaging the frame below the driver’s side door. Thankfully, he was not injured in the incident, but his vehicle was seriously damaged, and he could no longer use the jack stands.
In both instances, the plaintiffs attempted to determine whether they could return the jack stands to the Harbor Freight store. They were both told that the jack stands were no longer under warranty and could not be returned. They had gotten no value out of the stands and they discarded them because they were unsafe.
Class Action Lawsuit Allegations
All consumers nationwide who purchased the recalled jack stands (items numbered 56371, 61196, and 61197) that were sold by Defendant for household use and suffered property damage as a result of the failure of those jack stands. Persons who suffered personal injury caused by the jack stands, as well as all employees of the Court and plaintiff’s counsel are excluded.
What does this mean? It means that the class action is seeking monetary relief for property damage but not personal injury claims. Again, Johnson//Becker is representing a number of people who were injured or killed by the defective jack stands.
Questions About a Harbor Freight Lawsuit? Contact a Johnson//Becker Lawyer for a Free Case Review.
Our lawyers already represent a number of people who have been seriously injured and killed by these defective jack stands. Contact us to learn more about your rights in filing a Harbor Freight recall lawsuit.
If you or loved one has been injured or killed by a defective Harbor Freight jack stand, you may want to speak with the lawyers at Johnson//Becker. We are actively filing new Harbor Freight lawsuits across the country and you may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries.
We offer a Free Case Evaluation. Please contact us using the form below or by calling us at (800) 279-6386.
We would be honored to speak with you and respond promptly to every inquiry we receive.