Thursday, November 1, 2012

Where to get safety recall info?

By Philip Copitch, Ph.D.

Almost everyday you hear that something is good for you or bad for you. Caffeine is a life saver, or shortens your life. One research article says this, another says that.

Most of the time I have low expectations for the accuracy of the information as reported in the major media. I expect that most of the time the data will be misinterpreted and reported incorrectly. I am surprised when they get it right.

But in the area of product safety I need correct reporting. I trust one source above all others and consult their website regularly. This website brings together valuable information from many government departments such as:

  • drugs 
  • vaccines 
  • medical devices 
  • other biologics 
  • blood and plasma products 
  • veterinary products 
  • appliances 
  • clothing 
  • electronic / electrical 
  • furniture 
  • household 
  • children's products 
  • lighting / lighter 
  • outdoor 
  • sports / exercise

  • The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) of the U.S. Department of Transportation provides recall information including vehicle and equipment campaigns from 1966 to present. The campaigns include motor vehicle products which experienced a safety-related defect or did not comply with federal motor vehicle safety standards:
  • motor vehicles & related equipment 
  • child safety seats 
  • tires

  • provides the latest information on all food recalls and alerts as well as food illness outbreaks
And others...

The site is

recallsdotgov banner

The website has a wealth of information concerning dangerous products and food. You can get daily emails concerning all the areas they cover, or you can specify which ones you are interested in - for example, maybe you only want recalls concerning infant and children, or school buses.

If you have an Android Smartphone you can get an app that allows you to put in a product by name and see if it has any safety issues. This mobile app is great for garage sale buyers. Before you buy that gently used crib, make sure it is safe for your pride and joy.

Look for in the Android app store. Or learn more and download the app at: - Android Apps on Google Play

To my surprise, I could not find this app in the Apple app store. Hopefully it will show up soon.

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