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More states require school bus belts. Will it save many lives?

The Texas legislature has provided funding for three-point lap and shoulder belts on every new public school bus in the state. Texas joins New York, New Jersey, California, Florida and Louisiana as the only states to mandate seatbelts on school buses and vans.

Child injuries and fatalities on school buses are relatively rare. Children are more likely to be injured in the family car than to be injured while riding a bus. And in a collision involving a bus, it’s actually pedestrians, bicyclists and occupants of the other vehicle who are more likely to be killed. But if seat belts on the school bus spare even a few young lives, maybe it’s worth it the expense.

Yikes. Study suggests flu shots could be linked to miscarriage.

 Vaccine researchers have reported that pregnant women who got flu shots may be at higher risk of miscarriage. The unexpected and unexplained findings naturally create anxieties for OB-GYN practitioners. On the one hand, they want to keep their patients safe and informed. But they worry the news will encourage the “anti-vaxxer” movement, putting women and their babies at risk for influenza and other life-threatening diseases if they stop all vaccinations.

For now, there is no change in the recommendation that pregnant women get flu shots. The study contradicts previous research and so far researchers have no medical explanation for why the flu vaccine would trigger miscarriages. There will certainly be follow-up studies to determine if the risk is real and what it might mean for pregnant moms and immunizations.

Nurses are at high risk for workplace violence and other injuries

When you think of dangerous jobs, you think cops, firefighters, construction workers. Day in and day out, nurses face serious risk of injury, including harm from violence in the workplace. The greatest danger is from the patients they are trying to help.

Aside from the possibility of being assaulted at work, nurses are at higher risk for harm from just doing their jobs, such as lifting patients or drawing blood. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that health care employees have a higher rate of non-fatal workplace injuries than any occupation.

Tesla car “exonerated” in first self-driving auto fatality

In 2016, a self-driving Tesla automobile collided with an 18-wheeler, killing the “robot” car’s human occupant. The National Transportation Safety Board has concluded its investigation of the accident, believed to the world’s first fatality involving an autonomous vehicle.

The crash confirmed the fears of people who are reluctant to trust their lives to self-driving cars and trucks. Yet the NTSB’s final report places the blame with the truck driver, the Tesla driver who was killed, and the Tesla company. The self-driving technology itself did not necessarily fail.

California Jury Awards $417 Million In Talcum Powder Case

 Johnson & Johnson baby powder has been used for decades by millions of people. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s safe for everyone. In recent years, some medical evidence suggests a link between talcum powders and ovarian cancer. A California jury has awarded a whopping $417 million to a woman who developed cancer after using Johnson’s baby powder for years.

The link between talcum and ovarian cancers has not been definitely proven or disproven. Nonetheless, the lawsuit contended that Johnson & Johnson buried evidence that supports that link. This verdict will be appealed and very possibly reduced. Yet it is a game-changer as many similar lawsuits are waiting in the wings.

Why do so many U.S. mothers die or almost die from childbirth?

Sometimes everyone is so focused on the baby that they overlook serious threats to the mother’s health. Every year, about 800 U.S. women die from complications of pregnancy and childbirth, and another 65,000 suffer near-death medical emergencies. About half of these calamities occur after the baby is born.

Many moms who lived to tell the tale say they were not properly educated on the risks or the signs of life-threatening conditions. Research suggests that many of the nurses who should be teaching this are not adequately trained on maternal health care.

How common are injuries caused by work tools?

It has been estimated that serious injuries caused by work equipment happen to about 25 out of every 10,000 workers.

Bear in mind that these are ALL workers, including clerical, administrative and IT people. If you work in a more tool-intensive industry like construction, warehouse work, or heavy-duty work like plumbing, hauling, landscaping or excavating, the rate is much, much higher. Also note that these are nonfatal injuries. The figures below do not include people killed by tools and equipment.

The length and breadth of Southern Connecticut

For decades Connecticut was characterized as a commuter state, taking the trains and highways daily into New York.

The truth is, most of us work right here. Far from being a pleasant bedroom region, residents of our state do battle with trucks and other commercial vehicles every day on our interstates and freeways.

A Shocking Distracted Driving Trend: Taking Videos While Driving

Distracted driving is an epidemic that keeps growing. Talking on a phone or texting while driving are behaviors that many people engage in while driving. However, one new distracted driving trend is particularly dangerous: Taking videos or live streaming while driving.

Live Streaming While Driving Causes Teen Death

Hundreds Of Trucks Sidelined In Surprise Brake Inspection

Bad brakes are one of the most common dangers of commercial vehicles. Due to their massive weight, stopping distance is long even under ideal conditions. If the truck’s brakes are worn or substandard, it can lead to catastrophic harm to the motoring public in an emergency braking situation.

In May, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) conducted a day of unannounced roadside inspections across the U.S. and Canada. Out of 9,500 inspections, nearly 2,000 trucks were placed out of service for trucking infractions, including 1,146 trucks with brake-related violations. Frightening, when you consider they pulled over just a fraction of all the big trucks cruising American roads and highways.

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