There seems to be no limit to what can get recalled. What are we supposed to do, besides wait for the random news story, to keep up with them all?
Six government agencies have collaborated on a site for you to find information, report dangerous products, or just find safety tips. It’s called, logically enough, www.Recalls.gov.
The agencies are the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC), the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
The home page has tabs for consumer products, motor vehicles, boats, food, medicine, cosmetics, and environmental products. Those broad areas cover everything ordered recalled by any government agency.
Consumer products amounts to a huge “etc.” that covers anything from toys to appliances that doesn’t come under one of the other more focused headings. You can follow links to search for recent recalls (in reverse chronological order) or under either products or companies. You can find links to recalls before you’ll ever stumble across them in news stories.
Motor vehicle recalls cover not only vehicles, but tires, child safety seats, and other equipment. Recalls.gov also links to the NHTSA’s monthly report on safety recalls. Manufacturers can also recall vehicles for air quality violations. The EPA orders recalls vehicles if the manufacturers do not do so voluntarily. In either case, you can find out about it under this tab.
The USCG has jurisdiction over all boats and personal watercraft, even those on bodies of water hundreds of miles from the nearest coast.
The FDA has jurisdiction over three of the tabs. Food, medicine, and cosmetics each have different kinds of issues. You can find a Food Safety Widget and links to the Food Safety and Inspection Services, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, in addition to the FDA’s own site, under the food tab.
The medicine and cosmetics tabs link only to the related parts of the FDA’s site. The drugs tab includes medical devices, blood and plasma products, and veterinary products.
Environmental products subject to recall include pesticides, rodenticides, fungicides, and vehicle emission testing. That tab also has links to EPA’s information on other mobile sources of air pollution and radiation.
Each of these tabs gives you access to information about recalls and opportunities to report unsafe or defective products. Some offer newsletters. The federal government has a vast and complicated web presence. With Recalls.gov, you don’t have to hunt through it. You can easily find any site that deals with recalls.
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