Common Law - The FindLaw Consumer Protection Law Blog

September 2006 Archives

526,000 Laptop Batteries Recalled

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), IBM, and Lenovo, Inc. announced the worldwide recall of 526,000 ThinkPad Notebook computer batteries, due to the risk of overheating and fire hazard. According to CPSC, the recalled lithium-ion batteries were sold with or sold separately for use with a number of ThinkPad notebook computer models. This recall is the fourth in recent months involving laptop batteries and overheating risks.

Playskool Recalls Toy Tool Benches After 2 Toddler Deaths

Playskool and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced the recall of about 255,000 Team Talkin' Tool Bench toys following the deaths of two young children, who suffocated when oversized plastic nails sold with the tool bench toys became forcefully lodged in the toddlers' throats. CPSC advises that consumers immediately take the two toy nails away from children and contact Playskool to get information on returning the nails for a $50 certificate for a Playskool (or its related companies’) product.

First Lawsuits Filed Over Spinach / E. coli

Three lawsuits have been filed in federal courts in Oregon, Washington, and Utah, over links between fresh spinach and a recent outbreak of E. coli sickness in more than 20 states. The suits name three spinach distributors as defendants: Natural Selection Foods, Natural Selection Foods Manufacturing, and Dole Food Co.

FDA Announces Update to Ortho Evra Label

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is announcing an update to the Ortho Evra label, after the results of a recent study supported FDA's concerns regarding the potential for Ortho Evra use to increase the risk of blood clots in some women. The label has recommended (and continues to recommend) that women with concerns or risk factors for thromboembolic disease talk with their healthcare provider about using Ortho Evra versus other contraceptive options.

FDA Warns Consumers on Spinach

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is warning consumers nationwide about an outbreak of E. coli bacterial infection in multiple states. The FDA states that the outbreak may be linked to fresh spinach (both bagged and unbagged), and "advises that people not eat any fresh spinach or salad blends containing fresh spinach that are consumed raw, until further notice." According to the FDA, 23 states have reported 146 illnesses to date, including 76 hospitalizations and one death.

Studies Raise New Vioxx Questions

On September 12, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) reported the results of recent studies suggesting that health risks associated with Vioxx use may be worse than previous research indicated -- including evidence of kidney problems, and signs that use of the painkiller causes an immediate increased risk of heart attack or stroke (rather than health risks after 18 months of use, as was previously suggested by Vioxx manufacturer Merck & Co., Inc.). Vioxx was withdrawn from the marketplace in September 2004.

Segway Scooters Recalled

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and manufacturer Segway, Inc. announced the nationwide recall of approximately 23,500 Segway Personal Transporter scooters (also known as the Segway Human Transporter). The recall was prompted by reports of the transporter unexpectedly applying reverse torque to the wheels, which can cause a rider to fall. CPSC advises consumers to stop using the Segway PT immediately and contact the company to receive a free software upgrade.

Anti-Rollover Technology Proposed for All New Vehicles

A new proposal to require auto manufacturers to install electronic stability control (ESC) as a standard feature on all new passenger vehicles has the potential to save more than 10,000 lives every year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced. The proposed rule would require all manufacturers to begin equipping passenger vehicles under 10,000 pounds with ESC starting with the 2009 model year, and to have the feature available as standard equipment on all vehicles by the 2012 model year.