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Our links page is categorized in three sections:
Product Defect Research Using the Internet
Legal and Product Safety Sites
Standards Organizations

Product Defect Research Using the Internet

Search for Standards

NSSN is an excellent source for global standards.  Using keywords, you can identify national and international safety standards and see their abstracts.  Most standards require a payment for the full copy, and some may be downloaded.

Medical Devices

The Food and Drug Administration site allows you to search for adverse events involving medical devices.  These events must be reported to FDA by medical practitioners whenever a medical device fails, whether someone was injured or not.  You can search by manufacturer, model or keywords. http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfMAUDE/search.CFM

The National Library of Medicine provides a fantastic online search system at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/gquery/gquery.fcgi. You can search using keywords, and obtain the full text of medical research papers.  


When investigating a product issue, it is often useful to search for the product’s patents, if any, and those of similar or competitive products developed earlier and later. The United States Patent and Trademark Office site at http://www.uspto.gov/ allows you to search all US patents, and you can view or print the full text online for free (for patents issued since 1976). You can search by title, inventor, company, subject, or by keywords in the specification or claims. You can also see the referenced patents and view or print those as well. 

Automobiles and Light Trucks

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is probably the single most useful site for auto defect research. The following searchable databases are found at http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/problems where you will find titles and a short description of the following: 

  • Recalls
  • Technical Service Bulletins
  • Consumer Complaints
  • Defect Investigations 
You just type in the year, make and model, and get nearly instant access to these databases and more. Many of the source documents are also available online.  If you need the full text of a particular item that is not available online, you can send a request (which you make by e-mail) and get the item you need in the mail. Jumping off from this site, you can visit other areas of NHTSA, including access to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards and current press information about newly announced recalls. NHTSA also has special areas for child restraints and air bag information. 

A new website for obtaining Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards is at http://www.cs.brandeis.edu/~zippy/49-CFR-571.html This site is a whole lot easier to use than the government sites. 

The National Center for Statistics and Analysis (NCSA) is located at http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/people/ncsa/ This site provides access to the following research tools which you might use for more detailed research: 

  • Fatal Analysis Reporting System (FARS) 
  • National Automotive Sampling System (NASS GES and NASS CDS) 
  • Special Crash Investigations (SCI) 
  • Crash Outcome Data Evaluation System (CODES) 
For additional detailed research, the Bureau of Transportation Statistics is located at http://www.bts.gov

Alldata Corporation is a private company providing service information to mechanics and consumers. Located at http://www.alldata.tsb.com/ this resource lists the same Recalls and Technical Service Bulletins provided through NHTSA. For a fee of $29.95, you can order a CD Rom containing the full text Service Bulletins with illustrations, or Service/Repair information for a single make, year and model of car or truck. This can be the most efficient method of obtaining the complete service bulletins. 

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has a website at http://www.iihs.org/ containing a wealth of information on highway safety subjects. 

Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety at http://www.saferoads.org/ is a good source of public policy information on auto safety. 

The Society of Automotive Engineers at http://www.sae.org/ provides access to tools for finding Technical Papers, Standards and topical automotive subjects. 

For safety information on Highway Trucks, the Federal Highway Administration at http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ is the source for legislation, regulations, statistics and more. 

Consumer Products

The Federal Trade Commission at http://www.ftc.gov provides timely reports on consumer protection issues. 

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) at http://www.cpsc.gov/ provides a current database of recall information on Automotive and Transportation, Toys and Child Safety and Software, Computers and Office Equipment. Industrial Equipment 

The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) site at http://www.osha.gov/ allows you to search OSHA Standards & Related Documents covering the full range of industrial safety issues.

Legal and Product Safety Sites

DOT - National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
Search a Specific Vehicle for:

  • Recalls
  • Consumer Complaints
  • Technical Service Bulletins
  • Defect Investigations 
Recent DOT Press Releases

Auto Safety Hotline

Federal Trade Commission

Maryland Law site


Alldata Corporation

  • Repair Information
  • Technical Service Bulletins
  • Online Shop Manuals
Consumer Product Safety Commission

Standards Organizations

AAAS American Academy for the Advancement of Science

AAMA American Apparel and Footwear Association

AAMI Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation

AAMVA American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators

AASHTO American Association of State and Highway Transportation Officials

AATCC American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists

ABMA American Brush Manufacturers Association

ACDE Association of Commercial Diving Educators

ACI American Concrete Institute

ACGIH American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists

ADA American Dental Association

ADAAG Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines

AGA American Gas Association

AFS American Foundrymen’s Society

AGMA American Gear Manufacturers Association

AIA Automated Imaging Association

AIAA American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics

AIChE American Institute of Chemical Enginers

AIIM Association for Information and Image Management

AISC American Institute of Steel Construction, Inc.

AITC American Institute of Timber Construction

ALI Automotive Lift Institute

AMCA Air Movement and Control Association

ANSI American National Standards Institute

API American Petroleum Institute

ARI Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute

ARMA Association of Records Managers and Administrators

ASA Acoustical Society of America

ASAE American Society of Agricultural Engineers

ASCE American Society of Civil Engineers

ASHRAE American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers

ASME American Society of Mechanical Engineers

ASNT American Society for Nondestructive Testing

ASQC American Society for Quality

ASSE American Society of Safety Engineers

ASTM American Society for Testing and Materials

ATMI American Textile Manufacturers Institute

AWS American Welding Society

AWWA American Water Works Association

BHMA Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association

BHSI Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute

BIA Binding Industries of Association

BIFMA Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association

BOCA Building Officials and Code Administrators (now ICC)

CABO Council of American Building Officials

CFR Code of Federal Regulations

CGA Compressed Gas Association

CPSC Consumer Product Safety Commission

CRSI Concrete Reinforcing Steel Institute

CSA Canadian Standards Association

CSAA Central Station Alarm Association

CTI Cooling Technology Institute

DASMA Door & Access Systems Manufacturers Association, International

DHI Door and Hardware Institute

DOT Department of Transportation

EPA Environmental Protection Agency

EIA Electronic Industries Alliance

ESDA Electrostatic Discharge Association

FAR Federal Acquisition Regulations

FDA Food and Drug Administration

FHA Federal Highway Administration

FMVSS Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards

FSF Flight Safety Foundation

GAMA Gas Appliance Manufacturers Association

GRI Gas Technology Institute

HFES Human Factors and Ergonomics Society

HTI Hand Tools Institute

IAI International Association for Identification

IAPMO International Association for Plumbing and Mechanical Officials

ICBO International Conference of Building Officials

International Code Council (formerly BOCA)

IEC International Electrotechnical Commission

IEEE Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers

IIIA International Imaging Industry Association

IIE Institute of Industrial Engineers

IPC Institute for Interconnecting and Packaging Electronic Circuits

ISA Instrument Society of America

ISANTA International Staple, Nail and Tool Association

ISB International Society of Biomechanics

ISEA International Safety Equipment Association

ISO International Standards Organization

MIL Military Standards (DoD)

NAPHCC National Association of Plumbing, Heating and Cooling Contractors

NAPIM National Association of Printing Ink Manufacturers

NB National Board of Boiler and Pressure Vessel Inspectors (NBBPVI)

NECA National Electrical Contractors Association

NEMA National Electrical Manufacturers Association

NETA InterNational Electrical Testing Association

NFPA National Fire Protection Association

NFPA National Fluid Power Association

NIOSH National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health

NISO National Information Standards Organization

NIST National Institute of Standards and Technology

NKBA National Kitchen & Bath Association

NMA National Micrographics Association (now AIIM)

NSC National Safety Council

NSSN National Standards System Network

NWWDA National Wood Window and Door Association

OPEI Outdoor Power Equipment Institute, Inc.

OSHA Occupational Health and Safety Administration

RESNA Rehabilitation Engineering & Assistive Technology Society

RIA Robotic Industries Association

RMA Rubber Manufacturers Association

RVIA Recreational Vehicle Industry Association

SAE Society of Automotive Engineers

SES Standards Engineering Society

SGCC Safety Glazing Certification Council

SI Salt Institute

SMF Snell Memorial Foundation (safety helmet standards)

SPI The Society of the Plastics Industry, Inc.

SPRI Single Ply Roofing Institute

SSCI Steel Shipping Container Institute

STI Steel Tank Institute

TIA Telecommunications Industries Association

TIA Toy Industry Association

UBC Uniform Building Code

UL Underwriters Laboratories

USC United States Code

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