Consumer Connections Newsletter

December 18, 2017

We're committed to providing the latest and best news and information in order to help you become a better, more informed consumer.

Whether it's a safety recall affecting your vehicle, a recall for a product in your home, or a new scam that's making the rounds, we feature it here.

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Top News

laptop computer

Work-at-Home Operators Banned from Selling Business Opportunities and Business Coaching Services

The operators of a work-at-home scheme are now banned from selling business opportunities and business coaching services under a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

dog at Christmas

Protect Your Pets from Poisonous Winter Plants Popular in Holiday Decor

As you deck the halls this holiday season, make sure to keep the safety of your pets at the forefront of your mind. Plants like poinsettias, holly, and mistletoe can be toxic to dogs, cats, and other pets.

plane on runway

FAA Proposes Largest Ever Civil Penalty Involving Improper Shipment of Lithium Ion Batteries

The FAA has proposed a $1.1 million penalty against Braille Battery, Inc. This is the largest civil penalty ever proposed for alleged violations relating to the air shipment of lithium batteries.

Other News

giving to charity

Tips for Taxpayers Giving Year-End Financial Gifts to Charity

Planning on giving a year-end gift to charity? There are a number of important things to keep in mind, as a number of new tax law provisions have taken effect in recent years.

nc auto inspection

North Carolina Vehicle Safety Inspection Checklist

The annual vehicle and emission inspection process in North Carolina can be a simple 30 minute inconvenience for most consumers, or a nightmare for others. This checklist can help!

snowy road in winter

Be Prepared Before Hitting the Roads This Winter

With the winter driving season upon us, take precautionary measures to ensure that your vehicle is in optimal driving condition and properly equipped, especially for inclement weather.

payment data breach

Some Duke Energy Customers May Be Impacted By Payment Network Data Breach

Duke Energy Carolinas customers who paid a bill at one of the company's authorized walk-in payment processing centers may have had personally identifiable information exposed.

House in winter snow

Consumer Tips: Save Money on Your Home Heating Costs This Winter

Is your power bill going up as the temperatures outside fall? Don't worry! With just a little bit of work and these simple tips, you can save some serious cash this winter.

Amazon logo

Do Your Holiday Shopping and Support NCCC at the Same Time Using AmazonSmile!

If you're planning to do your holiday shopping online this year, we hope that you'll also take the opportunity to support the North Carolina Consumers Council at the same time!

Product Recalls

Crate and Barrel Dakota wooden bench

Crate and Barrel Recall Affects More Than 7,000 Wooden Benches That Can Tip Over

A risk of serious injury has prompted Crate and Barrel to recall 7,373 wooden benches that can tip over. Injuries have included broken toes, a broken foot, and a fingertip amputation.

John Deere 1025R tractor

John Deere Announces Recall of Utility Tractors That May Not Adequately Protect User

John Deere has announced the recall of approximately 3,680 compact utility tractors. On the recalled tractors, the rollover protective structure at the back of the tractor can loosen and fail.

Dream On Me crib mattress

RECALL: 23,000 Crib and Toddler Bed Mattresses Do Not Meet Flammability Standard

Dream On Me is recalling approximately 23,000 crib and toddler bed mattresses that fail to meet the mandatory federal flammability standard for mattresses, posing a fire hazard.

Westinghouse iGen2500 generator

Recalled Westinghouse Portable Generators Could Overheat and Catch Fire

Approximately 4,500 Westinghouse portable inverter generators are being recalled by MWE Investments. The affected generators can overheat, posing a fire hazard to consumers.

Food and Drug Recalls

smoked salmon

Listeria Risk Leads to Recall of Smoked Salmon from Springfield Smoked Fish

Springfield Smoked Fish is recalling its 1lb. packages of Prescliced Nova Salmon because they have the potential to be contaminated with listeria monocytogenes.

Choceur Dark Chocolate Bars

Chocolate Bars Sold at ALDI Stores Recalled Due to Undeclared Nut Allergen

ALDI has issued a voluntarily recall for Choceur Dark Chocolate Bars that may contain almond pieces. Almonds are not listed as an ingredient on the label, posing an allergy risk.

Maximum Strength Synodrin Pain Relieving Cream with Lidocaine

Synodrin Pain Cream Recalled Because It Is Not Child Resistant, Presenting Poisoning Hazard

Natural Solutions for Life is recalling 56,000 jars of Maximum Strength Synodrin Pain Relieving Cream with Lidocaine. The packaging is not child resistant as required.

Auto Recalls

Kia steering wheel

Brake Light Issue Prompts Recall of More Than 134,000 Kia Forte Vehicles

Due to an issue with the brake lights, Kia Motors America has initiated a recall affecting more than 134,000 model year 2012-2014 kia Forte and Forte Koup vehicles.

VW Volkswagen Atlas recall

New Recall from Volkswagen Addresses Fire Risk in Atlas Vehicles

Volkswagen has issued a recall for certain model year 2018 Atlas vehicles. The fuel tank on the affected vehicles may have been manufactured with insufficient wall thickness.


Mercedes Recalling More Than 8,000 4Matic, G63 AMG, and G65 AMG Vehicles

Mercedes is recalling more than 8,000 model year 2016-2017 G550 4Matic, G63 AMG, and G65 AMG vehicles. Increased braking effort and/or shifting to neutral may be necessary to stop.

2017-2018 Jeep Compass

Close to 26,000 Jeep Compass Vehicles Not in Compliance with Federal Safety Standard

Approximately 26,000 model year 2017-2018 Jeep Compass vehicles have been recalled by Chrysler. The brightness of the Instrument Panel Cluster cannot be adjusted.