In a Federal Register notice to be published August 21, the Commission states that disclosure of Commission records and studies relating to all Acts under its jurisdiction will be the rule, not the exception.
Information exempted from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act may, when not prohibited by law, nevertheless be available if the Commission determines that disclosure is in the public interest.
In accordance with the Consumer Product Safety Act, injury and accident investigation reports will continue to be available, although the names of victims and treating physicians cannot be identified in any manner without their permission.
The notice also proposes that Commission staff attempt to respond within 10 days to all requests for documents not routinely available and that search or reproduction costs only in excess of $25 be charged.
The notice states that the Commission will maintain a public reference room where records and copying facilities will be provided. The reference room will be located at the Commission headquarters, Office of the Secretary, 10th Floor, 1750 K Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20207.
Other subjects in the proposed policy include categories of information normally exempt from disclosure and procedures for appealing denials of information requests.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with the use of thousands of types of consumer products under the agency’s jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries, and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $1 trillion annually. CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical or mechanical hazard. CPSC's work to help ensure the safety of consumer products - such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters and household chemicals -– contributed to a decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 40 years.
Federal law bars any person from selling products subject to a publicly-announced voluntary recall by a manufacturer or a mandatory recall ordered by the Commission.
To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury go online to www.SaferProducts.gov or call CPSC's Hotline at 800-638-2772 or teletypewriter at 301-595-7054 for the hearing impaired. Consumers can obtain news release and recall information at www.cpsc.gov, on Twitter @USCPSC or by subscribing to CPSC's free e-mail newsletters.
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