It turns out that in rare circumstances it is possible for the boot to switch from a locked to a free cuff while skiing. If such situation did occur, the result could cause injury. Therefore, Scarpa is recognizing this possibility as a potential, unexpected liability.
Officially here is how the official recall notice phrases it.
SCARPA has elected to voluntarily recall all F1 EVO ski boots. SCARPA is asking all retailers and consumers who have purchased F1 Evo ski boots with the Tronic System to cease using them immediately and return them to SCARPA as soon as possible for a refund. It appears that given a rare combination of conditions and circumstances, the boot may unexpectedly switch from ski mode to walk mode, which may increase the likelihood of falling. For North American consumers, please cease using the boots immediately and return them as soon as possible to the point of original purchase for a refund. For North American dealers, please cease any further sales of the boots and contact SCARPA at (866) 998-2895 to set up a return and refund. In addition, please assist SCARPA in identifying all consumers who own the product. Thank you in advance, and SCARPA apologizes for any inconvenience this has caused our customers or retailers.
Personally speaking I think the automatic walk mode is a bit gimmicky and while I can’t ever imagine not wanting the cuff in walk mode if I’m not locked into a ski for making turns, nor am I a big fan of something that I can’t manually control or override. That’s a completely different issue than the potential liability of using the boot incorrectly, or of it malfunctioning with a potentially catastrophic injury as the result. In a time when courts allow people to sue companies with deeper pockets than their insurance policy coverage it is, unfortunately, prudent for Scarpa to announce such a recall. As to whether it is necessary for customers to return them, that depends on what sort of customer you are.