Buildings across U.S. are wrapped in same panels that fueled deadly London fire

An investigation by The Wall Street Journal found that thousands of buildings across the United States and around the world are wrapped in the same exterior panels that fueled the deadly fire in London’s Grenfell Tower. Typically made of polyethylene, these panels are highly combustible and safety experts warn that they shouldn’t be used in…

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Lead’s Hidden Toll

Reuters continues its reporting exposing hidden lead hazards nationwide in a 2-part series, Lead’s Hidden Toll. Part 1, constructed from previously undisclosed data, reveals how lead afflicts neighborhoods rich and poor in Los Angeles County, the nation’s most populous. Findings surprised local leaders, moving them to immediate reforms. Part 2 reveals how Reuters has now…

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Pharmacies fail to warn patients of dangerous drug combinations

In a Chicago Tribune investigation, reporters visited popular chain pharmacies with two prescriptions in hand. Taken together, the two drugs are highly dangerous and potentially deadly. Forty-nine percent of the time, the pharmacist handed over both prescriptions with no warning about the potential harm. Tens of thousands of people are hospitalized every year in the…

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National Guard inaction exposes communities to lead

America’s National Guard armories host community events from weddings to school sleepovers. They also house indoor firing ranges where part-time soldiers once tested their skills. Every time someone pulled the trigger, a bullet cast off bits of lead.  The Oregonian/OregonLive’s 18-month investigation found that the Guard’s neglect allowed lead dust to build up and contaminate…

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St. Louis restaurants get ‘Easy A’s’ risking public health

KSDK-TV revealed that the St. Louis Health Department has been handing out thousands of “A” inspection grades to restaurants that, according to the city’s own policies, should have gotten a “B” or “C” or even been shut down. Restaurants with roach infestations and multiple serious health violations were still given the top mark.   KSDK…

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Investigation finds safety recalls ignored by taxis, ride-sharing companies across the county

An investigation of taxis, Lyft and Uber in major cities found that one in three cars do not have federally-mandated safety recall work completed. TEGNA-owned television stations, 10Investigates in Tampa, Florida, and Cars.com collaborated to review thousands of vehicle identification numbers for taxis and ride-sharing services. The story lists findings in eight major cities across the…

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Minnesota schools failing to follow guidelines on testing for lead in water

KSTP News in Minnesota found that school officials across Minnesota are not following the state’s recommendations to test for lead in school water systems at least once every five years. Although these are recommendations and not regulations, a leading authority on lead amounts in water said that this issue was a critical health concern for…

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Auto body fumes a frequent complaint in San Diego

Complaints about fumes coming from San Diego-area car painting operations are among the most frequent reported to air authorities, according to a report by inewsource. An analysis of records found that more than 10 percent of air complaints in San Diego County cite auto and truck painting. While the industry has taken steps to move…

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Houston chemical facilities are putting citizens at risk

A yearlong Houston Chronicle investigation found that hundreds of chemicals threaten public safety across the country and in greater Houston, the capital of the nation’s petrochemical industry. Often these dangerous chemicals are stored at largely unregulated facilities that many residential neighbors don’t even know exist. In November 2014, four people died after a gas leak…

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Water systems across the country contain high levels of lead

Flint, Michigan is not alone in its drinking water crisis. A USA TODAY Network investigation identified almost 2,000 water systems across the country that showed excessive levels of lead contamination over the past four years. These systems reported lead levels that exceed Environmental Protection Agency standards. About 350 of the systems provide drinking water to schools…

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