A Win for Johnson & Johnson in Baby Powder-Mesothelioma Case

A Win for Johnson & Johnson in Baby Powder-Mesothelioma Case

A California jury today rejected claims that Johnson & Johnson and its talc supplier were responsible for the deadly cancer of a woman who blamed her illness on breathing asbestos fibers from contaminated body powders. On a 9-3 vote, the jury in Pasadena absolved J&J of negligence in the sale of Johnson’s Baby Powder and…

California Throttles Down Pollution from Small Engines

California Throttles Down Pollution from Small Engines

New California rules aimed at curbing the surprising amount of pollution coming from leaf blowers, lawn mowers and other small gas-powered machines cleared a final hurdle Monday, and are set to take effect on Jan. 1. The requirements mark another step in the state’s long-running battle to reduce emissions from a category of small engines…

First Amendment Claims Seen as Rx for Drug Makers, Headache for Consumers

First Amendment Claims Seen as Rx for Drug Makers, Headache for Consumers

On Oct. 26, 2005, Alfred Caronia, a sales consultant for a little-known pharmaceutical company based in California, met with a doctor to discuss promotion of one of the firm’s  drugs. The drug, a depressant called Xyrem, had been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat only certain patients with the sleep disorder…

FairWarning Investigates

A Lawyer's Weapon Against Farm Worker Complaints: Deportation FairWarining Investigates

A Lawyer’s Weapon Against Farm Worker Complaints: Deportation

As an attorney representing California Central Valley farmers and labor contractors who rely heavily on undocumented workers, Anthony Raimondo has become widely known for performing a sort of magic trick. He can sometimes make legal complaints against his clients – and the people who file them – disappear.

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Noisy, But That's Not All FairWarining Investigates

Noisy, But That’s Not All

Leaf Blowers Flagged as Prodigious Polluters -- And Possible Health Threat

Five years after starting his first job with a landscaping crew in the suburbs of Seattle, Fredi Dubon decided he had enough and called it quits. The work days were long, sometimes 12 hours, but a bigger problem was having to inhale exhaust from his gas-powered leaf blower.

Don't Drive Distracted, Wireless Industry Says, But Safety Advocates Want More Than Talk FairWarining Investigates

Don’t Drive Distracted, Wireless Industry Says, But Safety Advocates Want More Than Talk

Just after noon on March 29, a pickup truck crossed the center line of a rural road in South Texas and slammed into a church bus, killing 13 members of the First Baptist Church of New Braunfels. A police report said the 20-year-old pickup driver, who survived, had taken medication and was texting. In other words, he was on two drugs, not one.

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Open Burning at U.S. Military Sites Inflames Activists in Nearby Towns FairWarining Investigates

Open Burning at U.S. Military Sites Inflames Activists in Nearby Towns

Soon after Erin Card moved to within two miles of the Radford Army Ammunition Plant in Virginia two years ago, she began to notice threads of smoke that occasionally rose above the heavily wooded site. She started asking about the source, and eventually was stunned by what she learned: Toxic explosives were being burned in the open air.

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Gridlock on Anti-Lock Brakes Baffles Motorcycle Safety Advocates FairWarining Investigates

Gridlock on Anti-Lock Brakes Baffles Motorcycle Safety Advocates

After a long downward trend, U.S. traffic deaths are on the rise again, and a key factor is the stubbornly high fatality toll among some of the most exposed people on the road: motorcyclists. Nevertheless, federal regulators have balked at requiring a safety measure that, many experts say, could save hundreds of bikers’ lives every year.

Cone of Silence on Enforcement News from U.S. Labor Department FairWarining Investigates

Cone of Silence on Enforcement News from U.S. Labor Department

Editor's note: See update at bottom of story.

In November, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced fines against businesses with workers who were killed when they were pulled into a wood chipper, burned in a refinery fire and crushed in collapsing grain bins and construction trenches. In all, OSHA issued 33 enforcement news releases that month, and over 50 more from Dec. 1 until just before Inauguration Day on Jan. 20.

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Novel Strategy for Dealing with Toxic Contamination: Do Nothing FairWarining Investigates

Novel Strategy for Dealing with Toxic Contamination: Do Nothing

At toxic cleanup sites across the country, environmental agencies have allowed groundwater contamination to go untreated and slowly diminish over time—a strategy that saves money for polluters but could cost taxpayers dearly and jeopardize drinking water supplies.

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Battling Menthol Restrictions, R.J. Reynolds Reaches Out to Sharpton, Other Black Leaders FairWarining Investigates

Battling Menthol Restrictions, R.J. Reynolds Reaches Out to Sharpton, Other Black Leaders

Tobacco giant R.J. Reynolds, the top seller of the menthol cigarettes favored by most black smokers, is seizing on the hot button issue of police harassment of blacks to counter efforts by public health advocates to restrict menthol sales.

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FairWarning Reports

Hit by Complaints About Fumes, Ford to Begin Providing Free Fixes for Explorers FairWarining Reports

Hit by Complaints About Fumes, Ford to Begin Providing Free Fixes for Explorers

Amid complaints by consumers about fumes and carbon monoxide seeping into the cabins of Ford Explorers, the nation’s No. 2 automaker next week will launch a free servicing program. Ford continues to insist that the vehicles are safe, despite complaints from more than 2,000 motorists who say they have been inhaling exhaust in their Explorers….

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Commentary

FairWarining Commentary

How to Stop Drug Price Gouging

One of Donald Trump’s few universally welcomed campaign promises was to do something about the prices of pharmaceutical drugs. Most Americans recognize that prices are too high, and are bothered by the rise of pharmaceutical price gouging.

FairWarining Commentary

In the Drive for Robot Cars, Will Regulators Keep Their Hands on the Wheel?

Few cabinet members can claim the distinction of shaping a revolution. But that opportunity will fall to Elaine Chao, President Trump’s choice to lead the Department of Transportation.

FairWarining Commentary

The Loss of a Consumer Champion

In Memoriam: Clarence Ditlow The long-time head of the Center for Auto Safety died last week at the age of 72. His passing triggered an outpouring of tributes from colleagues, friends and others, including these: Ben Kelley, board member of the Center for Auto Safety: There are very few activists who deserve the appellation “sui.