Posted on Jul 18, 2006
The Consumer Products Safety Commission has recently proposed revisions to its rules regarding when manufacturers, distributors and retailers of consumer products must report product hazards. The proposed revisions would increase the likelihood that defects in consumer products would not be disclosed to the CPSC or the public. This would make it more difficult for consumers to bring lawsuits regarding defective products because evidence of those defects can be hidden by the manufacturers. While the rule making process normally allows for public comment, but in this case the CPSC has categorized this as a "interpretive rule" so that a period of comment is not required. Thomas Moore, one of the CPSC Commissioners, described this proposal as "a sop to the industry and a weakening of the current hazard-reporting system." Members of the public who are concerned for their safety and those of their families are encouraged to write their congressmen and senators to protest this weakening of consumer protection.