Tough Start to 2009 for Garbage Truck Fatalities

The first three months of 2009 saw 12 solid waste collection workers killed while on their routes, and 9 died during a 15-day period in March. This followed a substantial decrease in solid waste collection fatalities in 2007, during which there were 18 worker fatalities. That reflected a more than 50 percent decrease from the prior year.

For years solid waste collection was among the five most dangerous occupations in the United States as measured by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics. Some of the more dangerous practices involving garbage trucks include double-sided pick up and rushing since workers sometimes … Read the rest

Microcars and Minicars: Crash Tests Show Occupant Safety Unduly Compromised

Occupants of smaller cars are at increased risk in all kinds of crashes, not just ones with heavier vehicles, according to The Insurance Institute For Highway Safety. Almost half of all crash deaths in minicars occur in single-vehicle crashes. Even if all cars became smaller and lighter, the result would be to afford less occupant protection fleetwide in single-vehicle crashes. The death rate per million 1-3-year-old minis in single-vehicle crashes during 2007 was 35 compared with 11 per million for very large cars. Even in midsize cars, the death rate in single-vehicle crashes was 17 percent lower than in minicars.… Read the rest

New York Plans Permanent Task Force on Wrongful Convictions

The Chief Judge of New York’s Court of Appeals, Hon. Jonathan Lippman, said on Law Day, May 1, 2009, that he would create a Justice Task Force to examine the causes of wrongful convictions and develop systemic remedies to minimize them and to make the states criminal justice system more effective. Importantly, the task force is permanent. Members of the task force are being selected by Judge Lippman and will include prosecutors, defense lawyers, scientists and lawmakers. They will have a broad mandate to examine police procedures, court rules and other issues involved in wrongful convictions.

The task force will … Read the rest

Black Box Warning Label Suggested For Flomax Due to Complications From Cataract Surgery

Cataract surgery is the most commonly performed operation in the United States today, with nearly 2 million cataract operations performed in the United States each year. Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), an enlarged prostate, is common in older men, affecting nearly 3 out of 4 men by the age of 70 years. BPH is often treated with tamsulosin hydrochloride (Flomax), an alpha-blocking drug that accounted for more than $1 billion in sales in 2007.

This BPH/cataract combination is dangerous: A study to assess the risk of adverse events following cataract surgery in older men prescribed Flomax found that exposure to tamsulosin … Read the rest

Dont Drink and Ride (a Bicycle), And Make Sure To Wear a Helmet

21 percent of autopsies of New York City bicyclists who died within three hours of their accidents detected alcohol in the body, according to a Department of Health and Mental Hygiene study that examined fatal bicycle accidents in New York City from 1996 to 2005, as reported in The New York Times. 176 out of 225 bicyclists who died in fatal accidents during the 10-year time period were tested for alcohol. Because alcohol is metabolized with time, only 84 of those cases the bicyclist had died within three hours of the crash were considered to have valid tests. 18 of … Read the rest

Time Running Out on this Years No-Penalty Retaining Wall Inspection Program

Homeowners have until June 1, 2009 to call 3-1-1 to request an inspection of their retaining walls by a Buildings Inspector without penalty of violation under the New York City Department of Buildings’ annual No-Penalty Retaining Wall Inspection Program. Buildings Commissioner Robert LiMandri launched this years program on March 25, 2009. During the inspection, a Buildings Inspector will conduct visual examinations of retaining walls and record structural conditions such as bulging, displaced material, or leaning of the wall.

If repair is needed or violating conditions that are not immediately unsafe are found on walls, the Buildings Department will defer issuing … Read the rest

511NY: New York State’s New Official Traffic and Travel Information Source

Dial 511 or visit www.511NY.org to find the most efficient route to take, avoiding accidents and congestion. 511 New York is a new travel-information service from the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT). The 511 New York service incorporates real-time traffic alerts from the NYSDOTs TransAlert program, and the MTA, Thruway Authority and Port Authority of New York and New Jerseys traffic-alert programs. This information is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

511 is the national three-digit phone number reserved for travel information. The phone service is an interactive voice system reachable by landline and … Read the rest

Correlation Between Player Position and The Type of Injury Sustained Affects National Football League Careers

The annual ritual of the NFL draft was held a few weeks ago and teams are now holding their rookie mini-camps to get a better look at the players they selected. Whether a player’s college career was affected by injury was a often a major factor in the evaluation of the player. But not all injuries are created equally, or, it should be said, affect positions equally, according to a study co-written by medical personnel from two N.F.L. teams published in the April 2009 issue of The American Journal of Sports Medicine. The study tested the effect of specific diagnoses … Read the rest

Enough is Enough: Federal Suit Demands New York City Housing Authority Fix Its Elevators

A lawsuit was filed in the United States Court for the Eastern District of New York on April 21, 2009 to force the New York City Housing Authority to repair and maintain its more than 3,300 elevators. The lawsuit cites numerous occasions when NYCHA buildings are completely without elevator service. The lawsuit also describes instances when these buildings have only one working elevator, leaving residents waiting in long lines to use the functioning car. Other frequent malfunctions cited include elevator doors without sensors, elevators which fail to stop at particular floors, or which stop above or below floor level, making … Read the rest

April Brought Us Not Just Showers But Also NYC Buildings Departments Construction Safety Week and the High Risk Construction Oversight Study

Last week was the annual construction safety week. The weeks schedule of events included seminars and events that were free of charge and open to the public. The seminars included: Safety Harness Giveaway & Worker Safety Training; How to Identify and Hire a Licensed Contractor; Homeowners’ Night: Resolving ECB Violations & Illegal Conversions; Construction, Demolition, & Abatement Operations; How to Obtain the New C-Class Hoisting Operators License; High Risk Construction Study: Cranes – Findings & Recommendations; High Risk Construction Study: Excavations – Findings & Recommendations; High Risk Construction Study: Concrete – Findings & Recommendations; Introduction to the New NYC Read the rest