BMW has expanded the European recall of its Club leather jacket to include all sizes, after initially only recalling the medium size. The jackets in question may be contaminated with chromium VI, which was revealed in random testing.
Chromium VI is an element that is used in numerous manufacturing processes, and can be found in trace amounts in everything from drinking water to cigarette smoke. Current leather tanning practices typically use chromium III, which is not considered harmful, is naturally occurring, and is sometimes used as a dietary supplement. However, chromium III may be contaminated with chromium VI, and under certain conditions, the oxidation of chromium III may produce chromium VI. Chromium VI can also form in leather during storage and shipment.
There exists a legally standardized limit to the amount of chromium VI that can be allowed in consumer leather products. Chromium VI can cause the reddening of skin, itching, and rashes, when in contact with skin. When inhaled, chromium VI poses an increased risk of lung cancer and lung tumors, and when ingested, can cause issues with the liver, kidneys, and immune system, although neither inhalation nor ingestion is considered a significant risk with leather products.
BMW says they are following instructions from the Munich Regional Administrative Authority in issuing the recall. The authority received notice from the Veterinäruntersuchungsamt Rhein-Ruhr-Wupper (Rhine-Ruhr-Wupper Veterinary Inspection Office) that random testing detected chromium VI above the legal limit in leather from BMW’s supplier.
BMW is instructing owners of the jacket to return it to any authorized BMW Motorrad dealership, and it will be exchanged for an equivalent BMW Motorrad product. BMW states that the recall will be honoured regardless of the age of the product.
Source: press.bmwgroup.com, ca.news.yahoo.com, satra.com, epa.gov