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61,000 gun safes recalled after 12-year-old’s shooting death


(The Hill) — Fortress Safe has recalled approximately 61,000 biometric gun safes after the shooting death of a 12-year-old boy, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced Thursday.

“The biometric lock on gun safes can be opened by unauthorized users, posing a risk of serious injury and a risk of death,” the CPSC wrote in a statement.

The CPSC said consumers may mistakenly believe they have correctly configured the biometric lock feature, but instead it is in open mode by default. This allows users, including children, to easily access the safe.

The regulatory agency highlighted a recent lawsuit that claimed a 12-year-old boy died from a gun obtained from one of these safes, while noting 39 incidents where users reported that their safes had been accessed by unmatched fingerprints.

The recalled safes were sold from January 2019 to October 2023 at various stores including Bass Pro Shops, Cabela’s, Scheel’s, Sportsman’s Guide, Optics Planet, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Gander, Rural King, Lowe’s and online at Amazon and Ebay , the commission said.

The model numbers affected by the recall include 11B20, 44B10, 44B10L, 44B20, 55B20, 55B30, 55B30G, 4BGGB and 55B30BP.

Individuals with an eligible safe are advised to immediately stop using the biometric reader in the safe, remove the batteries, and contact Fortress for a free replacement.

The reminder comes as gun-related child deaths reach historic highs in recent years.

A study released in August by the American Academy of Pediatrics found that firearm deaths among children increased again in 2021 to a total of 4,752, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This figure surpassed the previous high set in 2020.

A separate Pew Research Center study in April found that deaths of American children and adolescents jumped 50% between 2019 and 2021.


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