Summer Infant Bath Seats Recalled for Fall Hazards

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The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and Health Canada have issued defective product recalls for more than 2 million Summer Infant baby bath seats because they pose a serious risk of head injury to young children. According to Consumer Reports, the company’s Mother’s Touch and Deluxe Baby Bathers can suddenly collapse when parents lift them causing the baby to fall out of the bather. So far, CPSC and Summer Infant have received seven reports of incidents in the United States including five incidents where the babies suffered head injuries after a fall from the bather.

Four children between two weeks and two months old suffered skull fractures, including one infant who required intensive care for bleeding in the brain. A fifth child suffered a head injury that required emergency room treatment. Anyone who owns these recalled baby bathers are asked to stop using them right away and call Summer Infant for a free repair kit that includes a lock strap and installation instructions. Consumer Reports recommends that parents use infant bathtubs and that they always keep one hand on the child at all times.

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FDA Traces Salmonella Outbreak to Cantaloupe

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Hundreds of people have suffered from food poisoning because of a salmonella outbreak that the US. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has traced to contaminated cantaloupe. According to an alert put out by the FDA, the contaminated cantaloupe was collected at the Chamberlain Farms of Owensville, Indiana. The salmonella found in the cantaloupe is linked to a multi-state outbreak of salmonellosis that has already resulted in 178 reported illnesses.

Consumers who have recently purchased cantaloupe should ask their retailers where the cantaloupes were grown and whether it is safe to eat. Washing the potentially contaminated fruit will not help as the bacteria is inside the cantaloupe. Cutting into the contaminated food can also be dangerous as it could allow harmful bacteria to surface. FDA officials have one piece of advise for consumers: When in doubt, throw it out.

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Coda Recalls Electric Vehicles for Defective Side Airbags

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Los Angeles-based electric car company, Coda Automotive, has issued a recall of their electric cars for potential side airbag defects. According to a news report in the Los Angeles Times, the defective side airbags were installed improperly and may not deploy during an accident. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that only 78 vehicles are involved in the recall because so few Coda vehicles have been sold since they became available in March of this year. Coda Automotive says that there have been no known incidents or injuries related to this vehicle defect. A date has not been set for the recall. Anyone who owns or drives one of these vehicles would be well advised to contact the manufacturer for more information regarding this recall.

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Mexican Mangoes Linked to Salmonella Outbreak in California

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Daniella brand mangoes that are imported from Mexico are being recalled due to food poisoning concerns. According to a USA Today news report, Splendid Products of Burlingame, California, which distributes the fruit, issued a voluntary recall because they have been linked to a salmonella outbreak. Canada’s Food Inspection Agency reports that the mangoes are linked to 22 salmonella infections while California has had 73 cases of the strain known as salmonella Braenderup. About 67 percent of those who were sickened in California said they ate mangoes, California Department of Public Health officials say. Washington State has also reported six cases.

My thoughts and prayers are with those who have been affected by this salmonella outbreak. I wish them the very best for a speedy and complete recovery.

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Castaic Man Killed in Santa Clarita Area Car Crash

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Anthony Friel, 45, was killed in a Santa Clarita area car accident after he lost control of his Toyota pickup truck and crashed. According to a news report in The Signal, the fatal accident occurred early morning on August 26, 2012. California Highway Patrol officials say Friel was traveling in the northbound lanes of the Interstate 5, between Valencia Boulevard and McBean Parkway, at the time of the incident. His truck collided with a sign and then went airborne, before striking a large tree. Friel suffered massive head injuries. He died at the scene. Officials are investigating the cause of the crash.

My thoughts and prayers are with the family members and friends of Anthony Friel who are mourning the loss of their loved one. I offer my deepest sympathies to them. Friel was apparently a local resident who graduated from Saugus High School and worked as a stagehand.

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Is General Motors Ignoring Defective Airbag Complaints?

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There have been a number of inadvertent airbag deployment incidents recently involving General Motors vehicles. According to an MSN news report, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and GM have not investigated these alleged airbag defects involving problems with the airbag sensors despite multiple reports of inadvertent deployments. There have been at least 19 reported instances of sudden airbag deployments involving GM vehicles. According to the report, the vehicles include Chevrolet, Cadillac, Hummer and Buick models.

One consumer reported an incident where the side curtain airbags in a CTS-V wagon deployed suddenly. The driver of a 2009 Chevrolet HHR SS had a similar experience when the vehicles side curtain airbags deployed as during a hard left turn. The driver of a 2011 Buick Regal was surprised when four side airbags deployed as his vehicle went over a bump on the roadway. It is not clear if GM or NHTSA will begin an investigation with regard to these potentially defective vehicles.

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NHTSA Requires Changes to Black Box Data Standards

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Many recent model-year vehicles contain event data recorders (EDRs), known as “black boxes” that constantly track and capture key vehicle information that could prove to be very useful after a car accident.¬†However, the access to the data collected from the EDRs and its analysis has so far been problematic and ineffectual. This stems from the variations in the information being recorded by the gadgets that are made by different automakers, as well as an absence of a consistent retrieval system for the data. According to Consumer Reports, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has ruled that all automakers must standardize the data collected by these black boxes. The ruling does not mandate black boxes in all vehicles, but it does affect what data is collected and how that data can be accessed.

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Nissan Versa Vehicles Under Investigation for Potential Airbag Defects

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has announced an investigation into Nissan Versa sedans from model year 2012 for potentially defective airbags. According to Consumer Reports, there are 100,000 Nissan sedans that may be affected by this auto defect. NHTSA officials say that there is “pinched wiring” in the steering wheel that can prevent the airbag from deploying during a collision. It is not clear if the investigation will result in a recall or if any Versa occupants have been injured by airbags failing to deploy.

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Romaine Lettuce Recalled for E. Coli Contamination

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A California produce supplier has issued a safety recall for romaine lettuce due to food poisoning concerns. According to The Associated Press, the Salinas-based company Tanimura & Antle issued the recall on August 19, 2012 for Field Fresh Wrapped Single Head Romaine because of potential E. coli contamination. Representatives for the company say there are 2,095 cases of lettuce that are potentially contaminated. The recalled lettuce has a UPC number of 0-27918-20314-9 and likely a “best by” date of August 19, 2012. There have been no illnesses reported yet due to of these defective food products.

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GM and Isuzu Recall SUVs Due to Fire Hazards

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Isuzu and General Motors have issued an auto defect recall for more than 258,000 SUVs for an electrical issue that can result in vehicle fires. According to an Associated Press news report, the auto recall includes the Chevrolet TrailBlazer, GMC Envoy, Buick Rainier, Isuzu Ascender and Saab 97-X SUVs from the 2006 and 2007 model years. In these vehicles, corrosion in the power-window and door-switch circuit boards can result in short-circuits and fires.

Officials with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) say that GM has already received reports of 28 auto fires as a result of this particular electrical issue. It is not clear if there have been any reports of injuries. Vehicle owners can expect to get a recall notice in the mail soon. Following this, owners can have their power window switches replaced at no cost. If you own one of these recalled vehicles, please contact your dealer for more information.

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