CONSUMER CATCH-UP: Motorized awnings recalled after injuries, death, lawmakers ask for transparency in 'Amazon's Choice' program, and Domino's to deliver via e-bike

ByMichael Finney and Simone Chavoor via KGO logo
Wednesday, August 14, 2019
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CONSUMER CATCH-UP: Sunsetter motorized awnings recalled after 6 injuries and 1 death, lawmakers ask for transparency in 'Amazon's Choice' program, and Domino's to deliver pizzas via e-bike.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- SunSetter Motorized Awnings recalled after injuries, death

The Consumer Product Safety Commission has issued a recall alert for SunSetter Motorized Awnings after reports of six injuries and one death caused by malfunctioning awnings.

If the awning cover is secured with bungee tie-downs and the motor is activated, the awning can open unexpectedly when the cover is later removed - with enough force to knock a person over.

The recall affects 270,000 units in the United States. It includes "all soft vinyl awning covers used with SunSetter Motorized, Motorized XL, Motorized PRO, Motorized PROXL, and Oasis Freestanding Motorized Retractable Awnings distributed by SunSetter from June 1999 to January 2019 and supplied with bungee tie-downs."

Owners of affected awnings should contact SunSetter for free breakaway safety clips and instructions on how to use them. SunSetter can be contacted at 844-313-0144 from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET daily, online at www.sunsetter.com/safety-clips, or by email at safety-clips@sunsetter.com.

Lawmakers ask for transparency in "Amazon's Choice" selection process

Lawmakers are asking Amazon for an explanation of how products are selected for their "Amazon's Choice" program.

Products designated as "Amazon's Choice" display a banner over the product photo. Amazon launched the feature in 2015 to "simplify shopping" for customers.

Senators Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) wrote a letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos expressing concern that these products were chosen either arbitrarily, or based on fraudulent reviews. They asked for an explanation of the selection process, and in particular wanted to know how much of a role artificial intelligence played versus human review.

During a previous investigation by CNET, Amazon said they pick products that are "highly rated, well-priced products available to ship immediately."

Domino's trying out delivery by e-bike

Domino's will soon start using electric bikes to deliver pizza.

Domino's is trying out this new delivery method with hope of staying competitive with food-delivery apps such as Grubhub and DoorDash.

Although Domino's will not be able to compete with the wide variety of food options other delivery apps have available, it will be able to compete on delivery time and customer service. The custom e-bikes are specially designed to hold pizzas, drinks, and sides, can reach up to 20 miles per hour, and do not have to contend with the traffic and parking issues faced by cars.

The pizza chain has partnered with Rad Power Bikes to make the custom electric bikes. The bikes will be utilized later this year in Baltimore, Miami, Salt Lake City and Houston.

Take a look at more stories and videos by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.

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