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Consumer News

Senate Commerce Committee member Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla. displays the parts and function of a defective airbag made by Takata of Japan that has been linked to multiple deaths and injuries in cars driven in the US., Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014, during the committee's hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington.  (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Hearing draws apology, admission in air-bag mess

Thursday, November 20, 2014

WASHINGTON — The global quality chief of Takata Corp. apologized and an official from Honda acknowledged the automaker broke a disclosure law as a Senate committee put the spotlight on a growing problem with exploding air bags. Hiroshi Shimizu, Takata’s senior vice president of quality, said the Japanese parts supplier is “deeply sorry and anguished” about each instance when its …

Consumer group lists ‘10 worst toys’ for kids

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

BOSTON — A light-up bow whose arrows are advertised as flying up to 145 feet and the “Catapencil” — a pencil with a miniature slingshot-style launcher on its end — are on an annual list of unsafe toys released Wednesday by a Massachusetts-based consumer watchdog group. World Against Toys Causing Harm, or W.A.T.C.H., …

Feds push for national air bag recall

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

DETROIT — The federal government is demanding that the auto industry recall millions of additional cars equipped with faulty air bags that can injure — and even kill — a driver. The action Tuesday by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration covers driver’s side air bags equipped with inflators made by Takata Corp. …

Amherst’s Mercantile gearing up to move to N. Pleasant St.

Friday, July 25, 2014

AMHERST — An eclectic gift store that has anchored the northern end of downtown Amherst’s retail scene for more than 40 years will be moving closer to town center — and away from an area that is at the beginning stages of significant redevelopment. The Mercantile, located in …

Ex-CEO wants Market Basket protesters rehired

Monday, July 21, 2014

TEWKSBURY — The fired longtime chief executive of the Market Basket supermarket chain is urging the family-owned company to reinstate workers who were fired for protests demanding his return. Arthur T. Demoulas’s statement Monday night was his first since he was fired last month by a board controlled …

RJ Reynolds vows to fight Fla. jury’s $23.6B damages award

Sunday, July 20, 2014

MIAMI — The nation’s No. 2 cigarette maker is vowing to fight a jury verdict of $23.6 billion in punitive damages in a lawsuit filed by the widow of a longtime smoker who died of lung cancer. R.J. …

State will end prohibition on wine shipments to consumers Jan. 1

Saturday, July 12, 2014

BOSTON — Whether it’s pinot noir, merlot, chardonnay or cabernet sauvignon, wine lovers in Massachusetts will soon be able to have some of their favorite bottles shipped straight from the vineyards to their homes. A provision in the new state budget lifts a long-standing prohibition on direct deliveries …

Hundreds line up for legal marijuana in Wash.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

SEATTLE — Surrounded by thousands of packages of marijuana, Seattle’s top prosecutor sought some advice: Which one should he buy? A new day, indeed. Twenty months after voters legalized recreational cannabis for adults over 21, Washington state’s first …

Air bags’ humidity problem drives new round of auto recalls

Monday, June 23, 2014

DETROIT (AP) — Faulty air bags — which have already led to the recall of millions of cars worldwide — are blamed for a new round of recalls in the U.S. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the …

Resurgence of interest in member-owned co-ops said key to River Valley Market’s success in Northampton

Friday, June 20, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Six years after opening in an old granite quarry on North King Street, River Valley Market’s is doing far better than expected. The market is on target to exceed $20 million in annual sales by the …

State woos electric car buyers

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

BOSTON — Massachusetts drivers buying or leasing new electric cars can begin applying for rebates from the state worth up to $2,500, according to Gov. Deval Patrick’s administration. Department of Energy Resources Commissioner Mark Sylvia said the $2 million Massachusetts Offers Rebates for Electric Vehicles program will let …

GM recalls 3.4M more cars

Monday, June 16, 2014

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors says it needs to change or replace the keys for about 3.4 million cars because they could cause the ignition switch to move out of position if they’re carrying too much weight. GM said in a statement Monday that the switches can rotate …

Wildwood Barbecue in Hadley expands with 25-seat covered patio

Saturday, June 14, 2014

HADLEY — Less than a year after Wildwood Barbecue opened — specializing in smoking meats on site and serving beer from regional microbreweries — it is undergoing an expansion that will nearly double the size of its seating …