Tom Lewandowski is a toxicologist and chemist intimately aware of the public’s perceptions of chemicals and the emphasis the public sometimes places on the presence of chemical hazards in consumer products rather than the risk of chemical exposure to human health. He is currently leading Gradient’s efforts in the emerging area of green chemistry. He is also an Adjunct Associate Professor at Brooklyn College/The City University of New York, where he teaches environmental science and environmental health.
Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. announced February 2, 2016 a new safety standard for hoverboards. This announcement came only 8 weeks from the time videos of hoverboards catching fire went viral on the internet, galvanizing industry to come up with a way to allow hoverboards to be sold safely on the U.S. market. This week, Barb Guthrie, Vice President and Chief Public Safety Officer for Underwriters Laboratories, Inc., speaks with Masters of Disaster about the new UL standard for hoverboards.
When hoverboards catching on fire becomes the joke of a Saturday Night Live sketch, you know a safety issue has hit a nerve in popular culture. This week Tim Cassidy, a lithium battery expert in consumer electronics, is featured on Masters of Disaster to give listeners more context about the complexity and history of managing safety risks with Lithium Ion Batteries. This interview was conducted before the February 18 CPSC announcement that declares all hoverboards pose an unreasonable safety risk to consumers unless they meet specific Underwriters Laboratory (UL) requirements.