One Killed, One Critically Injured in Rancho Palos Verdes Rollover Accident

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A man in his 30s was killed and his passenger was critically injured in a Los Angeles car accident after their SUV went out of control and rolled over. According to a news report in the Daily Breeze, the rollover accident occurred early morning on May 18, 2012 on Palos Verdes Drive West near the Point Vicente Interpretive Center in Ranchos Palos Verdes. Police say the 2010 Range Rover SUV was headed west when it crashed into the center divider in an area where the road curves.

Both men were ejected onto the roadway. The driver died and the passenger was transported to an area hospital with life-threatening injuries. Investigators are planning to examine the vehicle’s data recorder to determine if the driver was speeding and whether the two men were buckled up at the time of the crash. It is not yet clear if alcohol was a factor in this fatal crash.

I offer my deepest condolences to the family members and friends of the deceased rollover accident victim. My thoughts and prayers are also with the critically injured passenger. I wish him the very best for a speedy and complete recovery.

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Honda Recalls Acura Sedans for Power Steering Issues

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Honda Motor Company is issuing an auto defect recall for Acura TL sedans in the United States to fix a problem with power steering hoses. According to an Associated Press news report, the recall involves about 53,000 sedans in which the hoses can deteriorate over time and leak fluid. That can cause the cars to lose power steering and even cause a fire. The recalled sedans are from the 2007 and 2008 model years. Honda officials say they have not yet received reports of crashes, injuries or fires related to the problem. In 2008, the Japanese automaker recalled 273,000 Acura TLs for a similar problem. Those vehicles were from the 2004 to 2008 model years. Owners can expect to get letters in mid-June telling them to take their cars to an Acura dealer for repairs.

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Government Proposal Aims to Prevent Bus and Truck Rollovers

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has come up with a proposal that would require manufacturers of trucks and buses to equip the vehicles with safety systems to prevent rollover accidents through computer-controlled braking. According to an Associated Press news report, NHTSA’s proposal would require electronic stability control in new large trucks and buses including motorcoaches.

The safety systems would basically sense when a driver might lose control and automatically applies the brakes to the individual wheels to stabilize the vehicle and prevent a rollover crash. It would also help skidding on icy or slick roadways and help motorists maintain control of the vehicle when they take evasive action such as avoiding another vehicle or debris on the roadway.

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Federal Officials Launch Investigation into 2012 Hyundai Elantra Side Airbags

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Officials at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) are investigating possible auto defects in 2012 Hyundai Elantra sedans after receiving a report from a vehicle owner who was severely cut from a piece of metal from the side airbag deployment during a collision. According to Consumer Reports, the metal along with the side airbag protruded from the left side headliner of the driver’s seat and cut the victim’s ear in half missing his neck by less than an inch. Neither Hyundai nor NHTSA have examined the crashed Elantra.

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Blow-Up Pool Slides Recalled after Death, Injuries

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The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued a defective product recall for 21,000 inflatable Banzai in-ground pool water slides after one reported death and severe injuries to two other consumers. According to an MSNBC news report, the pool slides, which were sold by large retailers such as Toys R Us and Wal-Mart could suddenly deflate causing the user to hit the ground. Safety officials also found the slide to be unstable and topple over in both, still and windy conditions.

The recall comes after the death of 29-year-old Robin Aleo, a Colorado mom who came down the inflated slide head-first. As she neared the bottom, the slide lost air and Aleo struck her head on the edge of the pool. She broke her neck and was paralyzed and unable to breathe. She died the following day. Aleo’s family sued Toys R Us. A jury awarded them $20.6 million. There were also two other cases involving catastrophic injuries. In one case, a 24-year-old Missouri man was rendered quadriplegic and in another case, a Pennsylvania woman broke her neck after the slide deflated.

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Ford Recalls Vehicles for Potential Defects

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Ford Motor Company has issued an auto defect recall for the F-150 pickup trucks, Mustang and Lincoln Navigator cars and the Expedition SUV because of a faulty transmission range sensor that was improperly calibrated for reverse gear. According to a report in The Car Connection, this recall affects 2012 Ford Expedition SUVs, 2011-12 Ford F-150 pickup trucks, 2012-12 Ford Mustang and the 2012 Lincoln Navigator. With these defects, it may be difficult or even impossible to put the vehicles in reverse gear. When the vehicles do go into reverse gear a number of other things may go wrong.

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Man Fatally Injured in San Diego Car Accident

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Douglas Wayne Powell, 52, was killed in a San Diego County car accident as his vehicle veered off the roadway and crashed into some trees. According to a 10News report, the fatal car crash occurred off state Route 78 west of Centre City Parkway in Escondido, the night of May 8, 2012. Officials say the Valley Center man lost control of his 2008 Acura TSX while travelling at about 65 miles per hour when it left the roadway and crashed into two trees. Powell was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. Alcohol and drugs do not appear to have been factors in the accident.

My heart goes out to the family and friends of Douglas Wayne Powell following this tragic car accident. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.

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BMW Vehicles Recalled for Defective Head Restraints

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BMW has issued an auto defect recall for their 3-Series vehicles from 2012 for failing to meet government mandates that help prevent whiplash and other injuries. According to a news report in The Car Connection, the recall includes 7,600 3-Series vehicles manufactured between October 19, 2011 and March 18, 2012. Officials with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) say the head restraints on these vehicles do not meet a government requirement to allow a maximum downward movement of 25 millimeters or roughly one inch. That stiffness minimizes the backward motion of the occupants’ heads during a car accident. This prevents whiplash and other injuries.

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Chrysler Recalls Cars for Overheating Fuse that Could Cause Vehicle Malfunction

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Chrysler has issued an auto defect recall for about 119,000 model year 2011 and 2012 Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger sedans because of a problem with an overheating fuse that could cause the anti-lock brakes and electronic stability control systems to malfunction. According to a CNN Money news report, the anti-lock brake systems that prevent the wheels from “locking up” during hard braking and electronic stability control systems that prevent a car from skidding during sharp turns can both fail if the fuse in these vehicles overheats. The fuse for the computer controller that operates these safety systems, when it overheats, can cause them to lose their effectiveness.

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World Berries Snacks Recalled for E. Coli Contamination

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A San Clemente-based company has issued a defective product recall for 6-ounce packages of its World Berries Organic Cacao Nibs due to potential bacterial contamination. According to a news report in The Orange County Register, FunFresh Foods, Inc. has announced that the snack foods may be contaminated with E. coli bacteria. About 500 packages were distributed and 263 have already been retrieved from retail stores.

The recalled products were sold in natural and health food stores in several states including California. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is conducting an investigation into this food contamination. Production has been suspended on these products. The recalled cacao nibs have a “use by” date of April 14. If you have questions or concerns, please contact the company at 1-800-232-8619. So far, no illnesses or food poisoning incidents have been reported as a result of these recalled products. Anyone who has these products at home is asked to return them to stores for a full refund. More

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