A device used to regulate the temperature of patients undergoing heart surgeries has been tied to numerous infections and a dozen deaths in the U.S. alone. The Food and Drug Administration's slow reaction to the problem demonstrates a gap in the way safety regulators evaluate medical devices for defects. Infections are a well-known problem in hospitals and may be treated as a general or background problem because of their frequency. Medical devices can be defective in ways not connected to the immediate purpose they serve. A device that facilitates an infection is defective, even if it operates in the way it was intended.
If you own a Galaxy Note 7 smartphone, power it down immediately and visit Samsung's website to see if your phone might have a defective battery. The recall of 1 million smartphones announced last week was prompted by over 100 reports of phones overheating and bursting into flames, resulting in burns, property damage and even house and car fires.
Residents in Iowa like to think that when they buy a food product off the shelves in the local grocery stores that they have nothing to worry about. Many put this kind of blind faith into many of their purchases, thinking that just because something is sold on the shelves it must be safe. After all, are there not tons of safety procedures and protocols in place to make sure that dangerous and defective products are not sold in stores? Surely tainted food would not be for sale.
Every year, millions of Americans rent vehicles when traveling for vacation or business. And, when these vehicles are rented, the expectation is that they are in safe-working condition and in a state of repair that does not unnecessarily put drivers and passengers at risk of injury or a car accident. Now a new bill before the federal Senate would help ensure that the vehicles rented by car rental companies are not awaiting recall.
In April 2009, a motorcyclist traveling at highway speed braked abruptly when traffic backed up. The passenger, his wife, flew off the motorcycle and hit the pavement. She was left with permanent head injuries, including memory loss, and will never again be able to hold down a job.
The Iowa State Fire Marshall has issued a warning of the dangers associated with using decorative "firepots" and fuel gel products. These firepots and fuel gel products are extremely dangerous to consumers and carry with them an unacceptable risk of serious burn injuries. Because of the nature of the fuel gel product, even an unlit, still hot, receptacle can ignite the highly flammable fuel gel and cause serious burn injuries or even death to persons in the immediate area of a firepot containing the gel. Several cases of serious burn injuries from these products have been reported in Iowa with many more nationwide.