The Senate Commerce Committee voted for major changes at the Consumer Product Safety Commission yesterday, including orders to move rapidly against the dangers of all-terrain vehicles.
In addition, the legislation requires the commission to address the issues of adult flammable sleepware, air pollution and the hazards of choking on small parts in toys. It also rescinds an exemption allowing sale of lawn darts to adults.
The bill was reported to the Senate for action that could be delayed, if the measure proves too controversial, by the adjournment crush.
Sen. Albert Gore (D-Tenn.), chairman of the consumer subcommittee, said the changes would revitalize the commission and called the bill a "long-awaited victory for the American consumer. For too long, the CPSC has been mired in inactivity and beleaguered by internal squabbles that have undercut the agency's product-safety activities. By streamlining the administration and structure of the agency, this legislation ensures that the CPSC will do its job and fulfill its statutory mandate to protect the public safety."
The bill provides that only two, not all three, commission members need to be present to take action, a move that Gore said would end the "paralysis" on the commission.