Power to the Consumer: Searchable Database of Product Safety Complaints Soon to be Online

Trying to keep your family safe from dangerous products is extraordinarily challenging. You can follow product recalls as millions of consumers do, but many of those aren't issued until months after a hazard has been identified, thanks to a sometimes clunky legal process that requires corporate cooperation.

As much energy as the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission spends trying to alert consumers to hazardous products, an alarming amount of the information it possesses is kept secret. Now a window into some of this dark space is about to open and shine light on dangers we don't yet know about.

Barring any of the light-dimming changes being sought by two CPSC commissioners, Americans will be able to see what others have reported as problems. The CPSC is about to finalize the details of Congressionally-mandated searchable database that will catalog consumer product safety complaints and make them available to the public. (See CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum, in an interview with Consumer Ally earlier this year, talk a bit about the database in the video below.)