Writer: Paul Feldman

Paul Feldman is a FairWarning staff writer.

Consumer Protection

Tired of Waiting for the Feds, Local Groups Target Menthol Cigarettes

A 2009 ad for Newport cigarettes, the top-selling menthol brand. (Courtesy of the Stanford University collection.) Anti-smoking groups, frustrated by federal inaction on restricting menthol cigarettes, are taking matters into their own hands. In recent months, cities ranging from Oakland and Los Gatos, Calif., to Minneapolis and St. [...]

Consumer Protection

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

A Ford Explorer on display at the 2015 Detroit International Auto Show. (iStock) 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 [...]

Environment

Report Spotlights Nitrate Contamination in Drinking Water Across the U.S.

iStock/Charlie Bishop Scientists have known for decades that drinking water contaminated by fertilizer nitrates can pose a threat to infants by undermining the ability of their blood to carry oxygen. The condition, known as 'blue baby syndrome,” led federal regulators to impose an environmental standard of no more than [...]

Consumer Protection

Survey Finds 27% of Autos Being Sold by CarMax Are Targets of Safety Recalls

(iStock photo) More than one in every four vehicles being sold by used car giant CarMax are under recall for safety flaws, including some with potentially deadly defects, according to a survey by auto safety groups. The safety groups, which are waging a court battle to revamp used [...]

Consumer Protection

Lots of Love for Driverless Cars, Except From One Group–Drivers

The driver of this Tesla, Joshua Brown, 40, was killed in Florida in May 2016 while using the car’s “Autopilot” system. (Photo by Florida Highway Patrol) As tech companies and automakers, cheered on by the federal government, race to test and promote autonomous vehicles, several surveys show that [...]

Consumer Protection

Despite Hazards, Drive to Open Public Roads to Off-Road Vehicles in High Gear

Eric Carr/Alamy Stock Photo More than 14,000 people, including roughly 3,200 children age 15 or younger, have been killed in crashes of all-terrain vehicles since federal safety officials began keeping track in the early 1980s. Studies have shown (here and here) that over half of the deaths occur [...]

Public Health

Feds Reject Insurance Hike for Big-Rigs, Pleasing Independent Truckers, Rankling Safety Advocates

Graham Brown was headed to his job as a computer technician when a drowsy big-rig driver swerved into his path and struck his car, sending it flying off a rural Illinois road and into a field. Brown was airlifted to a hospital for a six-hour surgery that saved his life. [...]

Public Health

Scientists Urge Tighter Scrutiny of Germ-Fighting Chemicals

(courtneyk/iStock) More than 200 scientists and public health advocates are urging regulators to take a closer look at the potential dangers of antimicrobial chemicals including triclosan, an additive that has been banned from hand soaps but remains an active ingredient in products ranging from building materials to Colgate's [...]

Consumer Protection

Fix Sought for Heat Deaths of Children Left in Cars

(stephco/iStock) Editor's note: See update at bottom of story. Each year, roughly three dozen children die of heatstroke in unattended vehicles. Today three congressmen and a coalition of safety groups announced plans to do something about it, through legislation to require alerts in cars as a reminder that [...]

Labor

U.S. Senators Ask: What’s Up at OSHA?

(Photo by Charles Evans Jr.) In the four months since President Trump took office, the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration has issued four news releases announcing penalties for job safety violations. By the end of May last year, it had issued 199. The recent reticence has spurred [...]