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Michael Grabell

Michael Grabell

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Michael Grabell covers economic and labor issues for ProPublica. He has produced stories for the New York Times, USA Today, NPR and the CBS Evening News. His investigative work has included stories on the TSA, the Lance Armstrong doping allegations, chemicals stored near schools and neighborhoods, and a bus fire that killed 23 nursing home patients. Before joining ProPublica, Grabell was a reporter at The Dallas Morning News. He is the author of "Money Well Spent?," a book about President Obama’s stimulus package and his efforts to revive the economy from the Great Recession.

Articles (page 4 of 13)

Bill Would Require Independent Study of X-Ray Body Scanners

Sen. Susan Collins is planning to introduce a bill that would require the TSA to conduct a new, independent health study of the X-ray body scanners used to screen airline passengers for explosives at airports.

Invasion of the Body Scanners: They’re Spreading, But Are They Safe and Effective?

One type of scanner uses X-rays, and ProPublica and PBS NewsHour revealed questions about whether it might increase cancer cases. But a safer type of scanner has its own problems. ProPublica investigated the biggest change to airport security since the metal detector.

Just How Good Are the TSA’s Body Scanners?

While the Transportation Security Administration says that airport body scanners are highly effective at detecting explosives hidden underneath clothing, some studies and a congressman briefed on classified research suggest the machines could miss carefully concealed plastic explosives.

Sweating Bullets: Body Scanners Can See Perspiration as a Potential Weapon

One type of airport body scanner deployed by the Transportation Security Administration has raised health concerns, but a safer type has registered such high false-alarm rates that Germany and France have nixed it.

Body Scanner Survey Methodology

Coffee, Tea or Cancer? Almost Half of Americans Oppose X-ray Body Scanners

A new Harris poll conducted for ProPublica shows that even if X-ray body scanners would prevent terrorists from smuggling explosives onto planes, 46 percent of Americans still oppose using them because they could cause a few people to eventually develop cancer.

Senator Seeks Answers on X-Ray Body Scanners

In letters to the Transportation Security Administration, Senator Susan Collins asked why the agency backed off its promise to conduct a new safety study of the X-ray machines, and recommended larger signs to advise pregnant women they can request a pat-down instead.

TSA Puts Off Safety Study of X-ray Body Scanners

After promising an independent evaluation of X-ray body scanners, the head of the TSA now says he’ll put it off pending an inspector general report on the machines.

Europe Bans X-Ray Body Scanners Used at U.S. Airports

The European Union has prohibited the use of X-ray body scanners, which emit low levels of a type of radiation shown to cause cancer.

TSA to Conduct New Study of X-Ray Body Scanners

The head of the TSA testified today that the agency will perform a new, independent study on the safety of X-ray body scanners after senators at a hearing raised questions about a ProPublica investigation.

U.S. Government Glossed Over Cancer Concerns As It Rolled Out Airport X-Ray Scanners

A 1998 safety panel was reassured X-ray body scanners wouldn't see widespread use. Today, despite having a safer alternative that the U.S. government deems highly effective, the Transportation Security Administration is marching millions of airline passengers through the scanners, parting ways with

Economic Myths: We Separate Fact From Fiction

Taxes are too high, the stimulus was too little. What’s true?

Could Unspent Stimulus Money Be Used to Fend Off a New Recession?

Taking back stimulus money committed to long-term infrastructure projects like high-speed rail and spending it on short-term stimuli like food stamps is easier said than done.

New Army Study Says Radiation From Airport Body Scanners Is Minor

The backscatter X-ray scanners, which the Transportation Security Administration uses to check for objects hidden under clothing, have been the subject of controversy about how safe they are and whether they create a cancer risk for the traveling public.

TSA Airport Scanners Wouldn’t Catch an Implant Bomber

Intelligence reports suggest terrorists may try to avoid airport security scanners by implanting explosive devices, and the Transportation Security Administration said that passengers flying to the United States may notice additional security measures.

Scientists Cast Doubt on TSA Tests of Full-Body Scanners

The Transportation Security Administration is confident that its full-body X-ray scanners are medically safe, but a group of scientists with expertise in cancer and radiation say the evidence made public to support those safety claims is unreliable.

Safety Reviewers Raise Questions About Construction of New Nuclear Fuel Plant

Two scientists say the NRC took construction and licensing shortcuts at a MOX fuel plant being built in South Carolina. The plant, which will convert plutonium from nuclear weapons into fuel for commercial reactors, is the first construction authorized by the NRC since the Three Mile Island accident

Villages Testify to Disparity in Benefits Alaska Native Corporations Provide

Congress created the system of Alaska Native Corporations with the promise of bringing prosperity to a scattered indigenous population stuck in poverty. Decades later, the villages of Chenega Bay and Napaskiak testify to the broad gap in benefits ANCs provide.

Slideshow: The Villages That Depend on ANCs

Congress created the system of Alaska Native Corporations with the promise of bringing prosperity to a scattered indigenous population stuck in poverty.

FAA Moves to Limit Blockout System Hiding Private Jet Flights

Citing a court ruling involving a ProPublica public records request, the Federal Aviation Administration says private jet owners may not block their whereabouts from real-time flight tracking without a valid security concern.
Michael Grabell

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