An Explanation of CPSC's Subscription List System

Are you wondering about these ten lists - which list to subscribe to, and why we have set it up this way? We'll try to explain.


CPSC sends three kinds of information to our subscription lists. These are:


  1. Recalls. CPSC announces recalls in press releases, which have been approved by CPSC and the companies involved, as part of negotiations to make recalls as effective as possible. Thus, we pass them along to the public in that format. We send recalls to list subscribers the same day they are issued.


  2. Other Press Releases. CPSC also uses press releases to announce noteworthy news items other than recalls, including:


    • Civil and criminal penalties
    • Major changes such as new and departing Commissioners
    • Seasonal topics such as fireworks and Halloween safety
    • Events such as Recall Roundup and Poison Prevention Week
    • New standards for products such as propane tanks
    • Safety tips/alerts on issues such as scooters and space heaters
    • Reports released on topics such as safety for older consumers and sleeping babies


    Again, as with recalls, we send all such press releases the same day they are issued.


  3. CPSC Public Calendar. This is a list of Commission meetings, staff meetings, Federal Register notices, and other similar information relating to the process of fostering product safety. As opposed to the information above which is released at the end of various activities, the Calendar reveals some of the issues that CPSC is working on. We send the Public Calendar the same day it is released, which is usually every Wednesday.


Many people want everything we send. Others just want recalls. Some want all releases but not the public calendar. There are people who just want to know about recalls in a certain category, such as those relating to children and infants.


On any given day, CPSC may issue some combination of all of the above. But if we had separate lists for each type of information, people could get over five messages from us in a given day, and we have found out that this can be, to be honest, annoying.


Thus, we have strived to come up with lists that cover just about all combinations, which lets you choose just one list to get everything you want in at most one message per day. They are:


  • The "all" list - everything we send
  • The "releases" list - all press releases, including recalls, but no public calendar or The Safety Review notification
  • The "recalls" list - all recalls only, and nothing else (no other press releases, The Safety Review notification, public calendar)
  • The "calendar" list - public calendar only
  • The "child" list - only those recalls relating to infant/children's products, and nothing else
  • The "recreation" list - only those recalls relating to sports and recreation, and nothing else
  • The "outdoor" list - only those recalls relating to outdoor use products, and nothing else
  • The "household" list - only those recalls relating to household products, and nothing else
  • The "specialty" list - only those recalls relating to specialty products, and nothing else


The category lists (last five above) are prioritized in the order given. Thus, "child" has priority over all others, "recreation" over the bottom three, etc. Recalls that might fit in more than one category will be assigned to the one with higher priority. For example, a crib could fit in the "child" or "household", so it will be assigned to "child". Or, a bicycle could fit in "recreation" or "outdoor", so it will be assigned to "recreation". The only exception to this is if a product is marketed to all ages, so, for example, a recall on a bicycle will be assigned to "recreation" even though a child may use one. But, children's tricycles would go in "child" as this product is marketed only for that group. Here are some examples of recalls you might receive if you subscribe to one of the five "category" choices:


  • The "child" list: recalls involving toys, strollers, cribs, children's clothing, baby walkers, tricycles
  • The "recreation" list: recalls involving bicycles, skateboards, roller skates, ATV's, snowmobiles, pools, exercise equipment, baseball, soccer, camping equipment
  • The "outdoor" list: recalls involving lawn mowers, grills, garden trimmers, chain saws, generators, snow throwers
  • The "household" list: recalls involving adult clothing, household furniture, electrical appliances/devices, televisions, heaters, furniture, CO and smoke detectors, cameras, hand and power tools
  • The "specialty" list: recalls involving products that don't fit in any other category, such as bleachers, escalators, elevators


We hope this explanation helps you in subscribing to the list of your choice!