About FairWarning


Website: http://www.floridabulldog.org
FairWarning has written 23 articles so far, you can find them below.


First Amendment claims seen as Rx for drug makers, headache for consumers

By Paul Raeburn, FairWarning 

Quentin Lueninghoener/ FairWarning

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 narcolepsy. But Caronia maintained, in a conversation with a doctor that was recorded by federal investigators, that the drug could be used to treat an array of other sleep and muscle ailments. (more…)

Don’t drive distracted, wireless industry says, but safety advocates want more than talk

By Myron Levin, FairWarning 

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.

It was a particularly gruesome toll for a single crash, but in recent years thousands have died on the nation’s highways, mostly in ones and twos, as a result of drivers fiddling with their phones. (more…)

New lookup to tell what’s in your water in South Florida and around the country

By Dan Ross, FairWarning 

Want to know what hazards might be lurking in your local water supply? An updated online database launched this week by the Environmental Working Group, a research and advocacy organization, provides some answers.

The online resource is known as the EWG’s Tap Water Database. It lists contaminants as well as their levels and likely sources, and any federal drinking water violations by local water utilities. Consumers, after typing in their zip code, get a detailed analysis based on testing from 2010 through 2015.

For example, click here to see the numbers for Fort Lauderdale’s drinking water. (more…)

Scientists urge tighter scrutiny of germ-fighting chemicals

By Paul Feldman, FairWarning 

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 Total toothpaste. (more…)

Headlight recall turns high beams on GM’s safety vow

By Christopher Jensen, FairWarning 

 

Three years ago, General Motors chief executive Mary Barra admitted that for years the automaker had concealed an ignition-switch defect, which has now been linked to at least 124 deaths. And she assured federal regulators that there would be a new pro-safety and pro-consumer attitude at the company.But federal safety regulators are now investigating whether GM has been adequately handling a recall of about 429,000 vehicles in the United States for the sudden failure of both low-beam headlights.

The investigation comes after 128 GM owners complained to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, according to a report posted on the agency’s website.
(more…)

Gridlock on Anti-Lock Brakes Baffles Motorcycle Safety Advocates

By Rick Schmitt and Paul Feldman, FairWarning 

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. (more…)

A moving story: Crooked movers victimize customers and usually get away with it

By Brian Joseph, FairWarningillustration_2

Gwen Caplan’s nightmare began with a Yelp search.

It was the summer of 2012 and the middle-aged mother of two was looking for someone to move her and her kids from San Rafael, Calif., to Glendale, Ariz. Money was tight, so Caplan scoured the web for an affordable but reputable moving company.

Her search unearthed several moving companies. One was called America’s Best Movers. It had terrible reviews online. “I said to myself, ‘It’s a good thing I used Yelp. I’m not going to use these people,’ ” Caplan would later tell a criminal grand jury. (more…)

The cash-rich pharmaceutical lobby and the rising cost of drugs for Medicare seniors

By Stuart Silverstein, FairWarning 

President George W. Bush signing the Medicare Prescription Drug Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003.

President George W. Bush signing the Medicare Prescription Drug Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003.

When the Republican-controlled Congress approved a landmark program in 2003 to help seniors buy prescription drugs, it slapped on an unusual restriction: The federal government was barred from negotiating cheaper prices for those medicines. Instead, the job of holding down costs was outsourced to the insurance companies delivering the subsidized new coverage, known as Medicare Part D.

The ban on government price bargaining, justified by supporters on free market grounds, has been derided by critics as a giant gift to the drug industry. Democratic lawmakers began introducing bills to free the government to use its vast purchasing power to negotiate better deals even before former President George W. Bush signed the Part D law, known as the Medicare Modernization Act. (more…)

IKEA agrees to massive recall of chests linked to tipover deaths of young children

By Brian Joseph, FairWarning 

Ikea store in Sunrise

Ikea store in Sunrise

IKEA, the home furnishings giant, announced Tuesday that it is recalling about 180 models of chests and dressers that it admitted do not meet voluntary industry safety standards, including the popular MALM-style dresser, which has killed three children by tipping over and falling on them. (more…)

Growing momentum for self-driving cars worries safety advocates

By Brian Joseph, FairWarning 

Many of the self-driving cars in Google’s fleet are converted Lexus SUVs.

Many of the self-driving cars in Google’s fleet are converted Lexus SUVs.

On Valentine’s Day in Silicon Valley, one of Google’s experimental, self-driving cars sideswiped a city bus at 2 miles an hour. The incident marked the first time an autonomous car contributed to an accident on a public road, but did nothing to diminish the Obama administration’s enthusiasm for driverless vehicles.

A month after the crash, at an autonomous car conference in Dearborn, Mich., Mark Rosekind, the administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, or NHTSA, said his agency and the federal Department of Transportation “are using all the tools we have available to advance what see as a revolution in technology,” according to his prepared remarks. “Our goal is to hasten this revolution.” (more…)

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