Consumer protection is an issue of national concern. As such, a number of federal agencies are charged with ensuring that products used by the public are free from dangerous defects. While there are many resources available through these government entities, Tennessee residents who would like to report defects may be confused about which one to contact. Below is a general overview of some of the major federal bodies that are involved in ensuring products are safe for public use.
One of the most commonly mentioned consumer protection agencies is the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. While the name of the agency suggests that it regulates food and drugs, the FDA explains that it also oversees products and consumable goods in the following categories:
- Medical devices
- Veterinary products
- Tobacco products
- Radiation-emitting electronic products
The FDA also notes that many other federal agencies have core functions relating to the safety of consumer products. Issues arising with food or water, for example, may involve action by the Environmental Protection Agency, which establishes standards for acceptable levels of impurities in drinking water and regulates the use of pesticides in farming. Food safety concerns may also involve the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which monitors certain types of food products, including meat and poultry.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission is another well-known federal agency that protects the public against defective products. The CPSC oversees issues regarding products that pose hazards relating to fires or contain defects that are chemical, mechanical or electrical in nature.
Those who have been injured because of a dangerous or defective product are encouraged to contact the appropriate agency to notify authorities that a product may need to be investigated.