July 17, 2008 - Markey: Finally Public Will Get Early Warning of Safety Risks of Products

Markey proposal to create public, online database of toy and other consumer product risks agreed upon
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today a proposal created by Representative Edward J. Markey (D-MA), a senior member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, to create an online, searchable public database of “adverse incidents” at the Consumer Product Safety Commission was agreed to be included in the CPSC reauthorization legislation currently being finalized by a House-Senate conference committee.

Rep. Markey’s proposal will require the CPSC to create a publicly searchable database that would allow consumers to access specific reports CPSC obtains from consumers, doctors, hospitals or manufacturers of serious injury, illness or death, or risk of serious injury illness or death that may be due to a faulty or unsafe product. Under the current process, consumers often have no idea that the CPSC has received complaints about serious injuries caused by specific products that they may be using everyday. This lack of information creates serious, avoidable risks for consumers across the country.


Rep. Markey said, "We already have online databases for complaints filed about cars, car-seats, automotive equipment or tires compiled by the Department of Transportation. The Food and Drug Administration has several publicly searchable databases to find out whether there have been problems with particular drugs or medical products. With this legislation, an equivalent protection will be created at the CPSC so consumers can quickly assess the safety of the products they are buying instead of having to wait months or even years for formal investigations to be completed and for a recall to take place."

Rep. Markey first offered an amendment to require the CPSC to create the publicly searchable database during a December 2007 House Energy and Commerce committee markup of H.R. 4040, the Consumer Product Safety Modernization Act. Although the Markey amendment was not adopted, a version was later included in the CPSC reauthorization legislation passed by the Senate.  Since that time, Rep. Markey has pressed for inclusion of the database language in the final version of the bill.  In a meeting today of House Members and Senators charged with resolving differences between the two versions of the legislation, a version of Markey's proposal was agreed to.



July 17, 2008

CONTACT: Ellen Connell, 202.225.2836