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It depends.. Companies do a risk benefit analysis before issuing a recall and one of the analysed factors (to the company) is how much this will cost to rectify against the cost in damages should the component fail and a resultant case of damages be brought. The damages and compensation numbers are much greater across the pond so it may well be a case of taking a risk over here and not mentioning it.

Have a search for issues with the Ford Pinto and its petrol tank design in the 70s for a juicy insight into how business place the mighty dollar above all else.
 
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