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article imageAustralian furniture retailer recalls chairs that chop toes

By Ken Hanly     Jan 12, 2016 in Business
Sydney - Fantastic Furniture advertises itself as having "Australia's Best Value in Bedding and Furniture." However, after two recent incidents with its Worx chairs it has recalled them.
The retailer has sold almost 100,000 of the popular chairs. There have been two incidents, one in which an entire toe was lost, and another in which part of a toe was sliced off.
Mark Bulman, from Sydney, lost his middle toe on his left foot last April, after it became caught in the inner side of one of the legs of a Worx chair, when he tripped as he was coming to the aid of his toddler, Nate. The toe was sliced off by a sharp metal edge on the inside of the leg. He said at the time: “They should have recalled the chair straight away. But nothing was done and now someone else has been hurt.” He told reporters that he was still not used to being without the toe and was seeking compensation. However, even after the incident the chairs passed subsequent quality control tests. Competitors sell virtually identical chairs to the $39 dollar Fantastic chairs but so far none of them have chopped off anyone's toes.
A second incident involved an 11-year old boy of the Gold Coast area, Trae McGovern stubbed his left foot on one of the chairs at a weekend barbecue at a friend's house. He underwent reconstructive surgery at the Gold Coast University Hospital but the doctors were unable to reattach the part of his second toe that had been sliced. Traes' mother, Jaclyn Gross, has been pushing for a recall saying : "This could have been avoided if something had been done after the original accident." The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission asked Fantastic Furniture to recall the chairs. The chairs are no longer available for purchase on their website.
The CEO of Fantastic, Deborah Singh told reporters that cutting toes was a "potential issue'." The company has 74 stores across Australia. The chairs are all reproductions of a 1934-designed cafe chair called the Xavier Pauchard Tolix. The company is retrofitting the chairs with plugs inside the legs to prevent future accidents involving cut toes. Customers can either request their money back or have their chairs fitted with the plugs.
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