Utah Bus Rollover Accident: Officials Questioned Lack of Adequate Federal Safety Standards

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National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) officials have concluded that driver fatigue and lack of federal safety standards protecting bus passengers contributed to the fatalities and catastrophic injuries in the January 2008 Utah bus rollover accident. These findings assume even more significance after this week’s Soledad California bus crash, which killed five and injured dozens. The fatal Utah bus accident, which was the subject of this NTSB study, occurred when an Arrow Stage Lines chartered bus taking skiers home to Arizona from Utah ran off a winding road and rolled down an embankment. The impact split open the bus’ roof and threw some passengers 100 yards. Nine were killed and 43 were injured. In the recent Central California bus crash, the bus split in half and passengers were thrown from an overpass to the freeway below.

The NTSB’s findings, in my opinion, warrant immediate response. I join my friends at the American Association for Justice (AAJ) in their call to transportation regulators to review pending pre-Obama administration regulations and open new rulemaking proceedings to enhance commercial transportation safety measures for both big rigs and buses. These pending safety regulations include on-board electronic recorders to monitor a driver’s hours of operation and prevent fatigue, seatbelts, stronger roofs and windows. The NTSB has been calling on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to enact these regulations for nearly a decade.
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Los Angeles Rollover Accident Injures Two

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A woman suffered major injuries in a Los Angeles rollover accident the morning of April 28, 2009 after her Ford Escort was struck by another car on the 210 Freeway. According to an article in the Pasadena Star News, the woman was going eastbound on the 210 when an Upland man in a Toyota Avalon struck her Escort. Both cars went out of control causing the rollover accident. The man suffered moderate personal injuries and the woman suffered serious personal injuries. She was trapped in her Escort when the car flipped on an embankment, California Highway Patrol officials said.

My heart goes out to both these injured victims, especially the woman who suffered major injuries. I wish both of them the very best for a quick and complete recovery.

According to the California Highway Patrol’s 2007 Statewide Integrated Traffic Reporting System, there were two fatal car accidents and 101 car accidents involving injuries in La Verne. In Los Angeles County as a whole, there were 712 deaths and 56,475 injuries reported as a result of car accidents in 2007.
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Salmonella-Contaminated Peanut Butter Death

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The family of 78-year-old Clifford Tousignant of Minneapolis has filed a lawsuit against an Ohio company in connection with his death from a salmonella-contaminated peanut butter. According to an Associated Press news report, Tousignant’s family has filed the lawsuit against Kanan Enterprises, owner of King Nut peanut butter brand, in the U.S. District Court in Minnesota.

According to the complaint Tousignant ate the defective King Nut peanut butter while in a nursing home in December. He apparently tested positive for a salmonella infection a short time later and died on January 12, 2009. Hundreds of people have been sickened across the country as a result of this salmonella outbreak involving King Nut peanut butter.
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Riverside County Fatal Rollover Accident Possibly Caused by Defective Tire

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Police in Riverside County have identified a man who died in a Riverside rollover accident as Milton Perry Jr., 87. According to an article in The Desert Sun, Perry was heading east on the Interstate 10, near Desert Center the morning of April 25, 2009, when a tire blew out and the pickup he was driving went off the road and rolled over. Riverside County Coroner’s officials say Perry was not wearing a seat belt and was thrown from the pickup. He was taken to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead shortly after this Indio rollover crash.

My heart goes out to the family of Milton Perry Jr. who was tragically killed in this Riverside County rollover accident. I offer my deepest condolences to everyone who knew and loved this man. Please keep him in your prayers.

Tire failure or tire tread separation are among the most common car product defects which cause drivers to lose control of their vehicles, especially when they are traveling at freeway speeds. When a tire blows out, the vehicle tends to go out of control and it is tough, even for experienced drivers, to correct such a situation. At least 10,000 people die each year in rollover accidents in the United States, according to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
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Pharmacy Error in Florida Leads to the Death of 21 Polo Horses

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Florida pharmacy errors resulted in the staff to incorrectly prepare a horse drug, which led to the death of 21 polo horses last weekend, the Associated Press reports. An official at Franck’s Pharmacy in Ocala, Florida, told the AP that an internal investigation found the strength of an ingredient in the medication given to the horses was incorrect. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is investigating the incident. The horses apparently collapsed shortly before a U.S. Open match, shocking spectators at the International Polo Club Palm Beach in Wellington.

Tragic as the death of these horses is, it is another reminder of the pharmacy errors that have been made in recent months and years. Pharmaceutical manufacturer errors have had adverse and in many occasions, fatal effects on users. Over the last few years, we’ve seen several cases where pharmacies and drug companies have made errors, either giving the patient the wrong medication or the wrong dosage.

In April 2008, the pharmaceutical company Actavis Totowa LLC. recalled all lots of its prescription heart drug, Digitek, because some of the drug’s tablets contained twice the approved level of the active ingredient. The tablets, which were used to treat heart failure and abnormal heart rhythms, were made with double the appropriate thickness and contained twice the approved level of active ingredients. Toxicity from this dangerous drug because of the high dosage, causes nausea, vomiting, dizziness, high blood pressure, cardiac instability or even death.
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Salmonella-Contaminated Sprouts Recalled in Los Angeles and Orange Counties

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Los Angeles food-borne illness attorneys have received word of an alfalfa recall. A Los Angeles County based company has recalled alfalfa sprouts that are believed to be contaminated with salmonella. Los Angeles Calco, Inc, based in Arcadia, announced that it is recalling 4-ounce containers of sprouts that it distributed to three wholesalers in Los Angeles and Costa Mesa. The containers have “sell-by” dates of April 23 and May 2. A Company official has apparently said that the sprouts were sold to local restaurants, but has not yet hit retail markets. Calco officials said that they detected the salmonella contamination in the sprouts during routine testing. No Salmonella illnesses have been reported so far.

Salmonella infection could cause symptoms such as diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps between 12 and 72 hours after the person has been infected. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, salmonella infection could last four to seven days. In some patients, hospitalization may be necessary and if left untreated the infection could become fatal. The elderly, infants and those with impaired immune systems are more likely to contract this fatal salmonella infection.
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Seattle SUV Rollover Accident Injures Three

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Three people were hurt — one critically — in a Seattle rollover accident, according to a Q13 Fox News report. The female driver of a Toyota Land Cruiser was critically injured after she lost control of the SUV on the Interstate 5 near Smokey Point. The Land Cruiser had veered to the right before the 42-year-old driver overcorrected and lost control of the vehicle, officials said. Two girls, ages 14 and 15, were also in the car. At least one of those girls was hospitalized with personal injuries. The condition of the other girl is not known.

My thoughts and prayers are with the injured victims and their families in this horrific rollover accident. I wish the woman as well as the young girls who were hurt the very best for a quick and complete recovery.

According to the Washington Department of Transportation’s 2007 traffic accident statistics, 288 motor vehicle drivers suffered fatal injuries in Washington State and 1,314 drivers suffered major injuries in traffic accidents. In Seattle, there were a total of 17,430 traffic collisions in 2007, out of which 18 were fatal, 258 involved serious injuries and 5,328 suffered minor injuries.
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Company Recalls 3 Million Exploding Exercise Balls

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EB brands has recalled 3 million fitness balls after reports that they can burst unexpectedly if overinflated, in spite of the fact that the defective products specifically say that they are burst-resistant. According to an ABC News report, a total of 47 people have reported that the fitness balls burst since 2000. Some have reported personal injuries such as fractures and multiple bruises as a result of the balls bursting. The recalled brands of exercise balls include Bally Total Fitness, Everlast, Valeo and Body Fit Fitness Balls, all made by EB Brands.

The ABC News report gives frightening examples of personal injuries suffered by people as they exercised on these balls. A Seattle woman fractured her sacrum after a Bally Sports ball exploded beneath her. Another Florida woman, who barely weighed 100 pounds, bruised her cheek and jaw.

However, in spite of the recall announcement, the fitness balls will remain on store shelves. There will be no changes in design or manufacture. In fact, there won’t even be any changes to the safety recommendations other than highlighting the safety and usage paragraphs in bolder type. EB Brands’ president says that their products out there are “fine.” The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has recommended that the company have more “robust warnings and guidelines” for future products to be shipped by EB Brands.
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California Food-Borne Illness: Asian Spices And Sauces Recalled For Salmonella Contamination

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California-based Union International Food Co. is expanding its Asian spice and sauce recall after their salmonella-tainted products have sickened 33 people throughout northern and central California and nine others in Nevada, Oregon and Washington. According to a news report in10news, the company had previously recalled Lian How brand and Uncle Chen brand dry spices. Because of the possibility of food-borne illness the brand will recall Lian How brand and Uncle Chen brand sauces, oil and oil blends in various size packages. These products may be contaminated with salmonella bacteria.

Salmonella infection, whose symptoms include diarrhea and severe stomach cramps, can be fatal. But so far, no deaths have been reported in connection with these recalled food products. Officials say most people sickened by the salmonella appeared to have been exposed to the bacteria while eating at Asian restaurants that used the company’s spices. The company said the salmonella was isolated from an open container of Lian How white pepper.
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Defective Bush Hog Utility Vehicles Recalled

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A company called Bush Hog is recalling about 850 if its defective off-road vehicles. According to an article in Consumeraffairs.com, the throttle cable of this vehicle can lock in freezing temperatures causing the engine not to return to idle when the driver takes his or her foot off the accelerator pedal. This obviously poses a risk of loss of vehicle control and injury to the driver and passenger. So far Bush Hog has received one report of an incident involving a frozen throttle cable on a utility vehicle. So far, the company says, no injuries have been reported as a result of this product defect.

This defective product recall involves the Bush Hog Models TH4400 (Trail Hand) and 4430 4X4 Off-Road Utility Vehicles. The words “Bush Hog” are printed on the utility vehicle’s cargo bed. Model “TH4400″ or “4430″ is printed on each side of the hood. The vehicles come in red, green or mossy oak. They were apparently manufactured in the United States and were sold by Bush Hog dealerships nationwide from April 2008 to December 2008 for between $8,000 and $10,000. Consumers are asked to stop using the recalled utility vehicles immediately and contact a dealer to schedule a free inspection and repair.
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