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Blog Posts in August, 2007

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  • Even Post-Katrina, Americans Unprepared for Natural Disasters

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 31-Aug-2007

    Only seven percent of U.S. households have taken three basic steps the American Red Cross recommends to prepare for a natural disaster, according to an agency news release. The organization advises that those steps can be conveniently summarized as: Get a kit, Make a plan, Be informed. In extended format, the steps are as follows: "Assemble or buy a disaster kit containing at least three days ...
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  • Home Safety: Tips to Reduce Home Scalding Injuries

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 30-Aug-2007

    Roughly 3,800 injuries — and even 34 deaths — occur every year due to scalding injuries from tap water that is too hot, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Most of these injuries involve senior citizens, children, and water heater thermostats that are turned up entirely too high. Don’t take hot water temperatures for granted. The Home Safety Council ...
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  • Graco, Britax Issue Safety Notices Over Child Safety Seats

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 29-Aug-2007

    Graco Children’s Products, Inc. and Britax Child Safety, Inc. have each recently issued safety alerts related to certain models of child safety seats for automobiles. Affected Graco seats have misrouted lower anchor belts — a flaw that could prevent the seat from remaining firmly restrained in the event of a collision, and potentially lead to serious injuries. On affected units, the ...
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  • Drugs for Stomach Acid May Cause Cognitive Decline: New Study

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 28-Aug-2007

    Common acid reflux and ulcer drugs appear to cause cognitive impairment in older African-American adults, according to a new study in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. Histamine 2 receptor antagonist (H2A) drugs — more commonly known as acid blockers — are among the most frequently prescribed drugs in the U.S., and some varieties are also available without prescription. ...
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  • Car Safety: Check Your Tires Before You Travel

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 28-Aug-2007

    Many families will soon hit the road for one last summer trip or vacation, but many will overlook one of the most important safety considerations of all, according to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) — the condition of their vehicle’s tires. Proper tire condition (including proper inflation) can improve your vacation in the following ways: "Improves ...
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  • 2007 Labor Day Crackdown on Drunk Drivers Announced

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 27-Aug-2007

    The number of alcohol-related traffic fatalities rose in Virginia and Maryland in 2006, but fell in D.C., according to new data released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The numbers were made public as part of a press briefing co-sponsored by NHTSA and Mothers Against Drunk Driving (M.A.D.D.), where the organizations announced an $11 million nationwide Labor Day ...
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  • Boating While Intoxicated: Dangers and Alternatives

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 26-Aug-2007

    Late summer is a popular time for recreational boaters, and consequently a time of increased boating injuries, many of which involve alcohol as a contributing factor. Operating, or even riding in a boat while intoxicated poses a number of dangers that may not become evident until it’s too late. According to the U.S. Coast Guard (U.S.C.G.), alcohol is particularly dangerous to boaters for ...
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  • Guidelines for Carrying Motorcycle Passengers

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 26-Aug-2007

    Motorcycling can be enjoyable recreation, as well as affordable transportation. Too frequently, however, accidents occur when motorcyclists attempt to carry passengers, unaware of the dangers posed by riding in tandem. While little forethought or additional driving skill is required to transport passengers in a car, carrying a passenger by motorcycle requires some special consideration — not ...
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  • Tips for Sharing the Road with Motorcyclists

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 25-Aug-2007

    Autumn foliage and milder temperatures will inspire many motorcyclists to take to the roads in greater numbers over the coming months. Understanding and anticipating the behavior of motorcyclists and other drivers can help prevent accidents and fatalities. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) encourages everyone on the road to "S.E.E." their surroundings: "S: Search for factors in ...
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  • Dorm Fire Data Triggers Alarm at CPSC

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 24-Aug-2007

    Approximately seven students die and 47 more are injured each year in college dorm fires, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Worse, data suggests that the number of fires has been increasing. The new data triggered an alarm at CPSC, and the organization issued a public warning this week, as thousands of students head toward campus to begin the new academic year. ...
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  • In-vitro Fertilization Increases Risk of Cerebral Palsy: New Study

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 23-Aug-2007

    In-vitro fertilization (IVF) increases the risk of urogenital malformation and Cerebral Palsy (CP) in children, according to a new study published in the medical journal The Lancet. Though the fertility procedures have been performed for about thirty years, researchers say relatively little is known yet regarding the health of children born via in-vitro fertilization. While some morbidity ...
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  • Back-to-School: Safety Tips for Teen Drivers and Their Parents

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 23-Aug-2007

    Many teens with graduated or provisional driving licenses will soon resume their daily commutes to high school or college, presenting a good opportunity to brush-up on some safe driving skills. The automotive safety website, Teendriving.com, offers the following suggestions for teens to prevent accidents or injuries specifically while driving to and from school: "Get to school five to ten ...
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  • Fire Hazard: Toshiba America Recalls Notebook Computer Batteries

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 23-Aug-2007

    Toshiba America has announced an expanded voluntary recall of defective lithium-ion laptop batteries manufactured by Sony Corporation. The batteries, which pose a fire hazard due to overheating, were not included in the much wider recall of Sony laptop batteries issued in 2006, also due to fire hazards from overheating. Most of the affected batteries accompanied new Toshiba Satellite and Tecra ...
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  • Back-to-School: Drowsy Teen Drivers Are Dangerous

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 22-Aug-2007

    Teens need more sleep than younger kids — 9 or more hours per night — but they frequently get 6 hours or less, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Though insufficient sleep carries a number of negative implications for teens’ health, it can make them particularly dangerous drivers. Here are nine things all teen drivers and their parents should know about ...
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  • Toyota Tacoma 4x4s Recall: Defective Propeller Shaft

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 22-Aug-2007

    Certain 2007 Toyota Tacoma 4×4 Trucks are being recalled by the National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Toyota Motor Corporation due to a drivetrain defect. Approximately 100 trucks are currently subject to the recall, involving rear propeller shafts which were improperly cast and my fail, separating and coming into contact with the road. Under the recall, ...
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  • Lead Poisoning: Public Service Information, Safety Tips

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 21-Aug-2007

    According to the U.S. National Safety Council (NSC), children under the age of 6 are at the greatest risk of lead poisoning. Most significant, perhaps, is that it is difficult for parents to identify that their children are suffering from lead poisoning. The symptoms are often subtle, and differ according to age. Though lead occurs naturally in the soil, it can be toxic to humans, particularly in ...
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  • Back-to-School: ABCs of Avoiding Back-to-School Injuries

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 20-Aug-2007

    Parents should pay special attention this fall to safety issues surrounding back-to-school clothing, helmets and art materials, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Thanks to CPSC, avoiding personal injury this season is as easy as remembering your ABCs: "A: Always wear the right helmet for the activity. Wearing a helmet significantly reduces the risk of a head ...
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  • Toys “R” Us Baby Bibs: Possibly Tainted with Lead

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 20-Aug-2007

    Vinyl baby bibs sold at Toys "R" Us stores may contain dangerous levels of lead, according to a recent Washington Post article. The bibs were produced in China for Louisiana-based Hamco Baby Products. According to the Post article, the Center for Environmental Health in Oakland, California — a nonprofit environmental advocacy group — purchased bibs from Toys "R" Us ...
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  • Eye Health May Contribute to Earlier Death: New Study

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 19-Aug-2007

    Older adults with cataracts or age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) are more likely to suffer an early death, according to new study published in the Archives of Ophthalmology. Cataracts involve a clouding of the lens of the eye, and ARMD is a gradual deterioration of the back of the retina. The authors of the study examined the link between the two conditions in more than 3,500 patients in a ...
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  • Dangerous Chinese Tires Sold in Virginia Are Being Recalled

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 19-Aug-2007

    More than a quarter million defective Chinese tires are being recalled by New Jersey-based Foreign Tire Sales, because they lack a gum strip — a band of rubber designed to keep the steel belts from separating. Belt separation can cause the tires to split apart at high speeds, and the flaw has already resulted in some fatalities. The tires were sold under the brand names Westlake, Compass and ...
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  • Immediate License Suspension for DWI Saves Lives: New Study

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 18-Aug-2007

    State laws mandating the immediate license suspension of any driver who fails a breathalizer test have a deterrent effect on drunk driving and save approximately 800 lives each year, according to a new study published in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. The study also found that license suspensions which occur after conviction of the offense have relatively little ...
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  • Infection Rates of Antibiotic-Related Bacteria Increase Dramatically: New Study

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 17-Aug-2007

    The rate of infection of Clostridium difficile (C. diff.) more than doubled between 1993 and 2003, according to a new study published in the journal Archives of Surgery. According to researchers, serious C. diff. infections, which often accompany prolonged antibiotic use, are becoming more prevalent in hospitals and nursing homes. In 1993, the C. diff. death rate was 20.3 deaths per 100,000 cases. ...
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  • Texas Judges Agree: Tort Reform Unnecessary

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 17-Aug-2007

    A recent two-year survey of Texas judges shows that runaway juries and frivolous lawsuits are mostly fictional events and that tort reform legislation isn’t necessary. To evaluate the nation’s need for tort reform, Baylor Law School researchers surveyed a broad sample of trial judges, whose unique position allows them to view the same evidence as jurors, yet remain non-partisan ...
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  • Seat Belt Counseling by Physicians Is Ineffective (But Seat Belts Are Still Important)

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 17-Aug-2007

    Physician-based counseling of patients regarding the proper use of seat belts and admonitions for driving while intoxicated do not lead to demonstrated improvements in behavior or public health, according to a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. Research conducted by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has found that while physician counseling causes no apparent harm, the ...
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  • Senior Eye Exams May Detect Early Dementia: New Study

    Posted By Regan Zambri & Long || 16-Aug-2007

    Eye exams may help predict dementia in seniors, according to research published in Stroke, the journal of the American Heart Association. Researchers say the presence of retinopathy (damaged retinas) in older patients is a sign of early damage to blood vessels in the brain, and has been known to indicate that the patient is more likely than others to suffer a stroke. This latest study controlled ...
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