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NY Senate Approves New Limo Regulations

The New York state Senate passed a package of limousine regulations Thursday following deadly limo crashes in Schoharie and Long Island. Democratic state Senator Tim Kennedy of the Buffalo area’s 63rd district stood alongside the families of limo crash victims as he outlined the regulations at the capitol. “From requiring seatbelts in every vehicle carrying nine or more passengers, to mandating commercial driver’s licenses and drug and alcohol testing for drivers for for-hire vehicles...

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New York Construction Workers Remain at Risk Without Legislative Action

With this year’s legislative session in full-swing in Albany, special interest groups have resumed their attacks on laws designed to keep workers safe on construction sites. Construction and insurance trade groups, seeking to shed accountability and pad their pockets, have argued that labor protections like the Scaffold Safety Law are somehow undermining worker safety. However, a recent data analysis by the New York Committee for Occupational Safety & Health (NYCOSH) confirms that stronger safety requirements in New York City are helping to reduce on-the-job fatalities while worker deaths continue to rise in other, less-regulated parts of the state. In 2017, the most recent...

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AMA Highlights May as Motorcycle Awareness Month

The American Motorcyclist Association is issuing a special appeal to motorists to be aware of motorcycles during May, which is Motorcycle Awareness Month and marks the return of motorcyclists to the roadways throughout the country. Drivers should double check their mirrors and blind spots before changing lanes, maintain a safe distance when following motorcycles and pay particular attention when making left turns across traffic. “Motorcycle Awareness Month also provides an excellent opportunity for us to educate the nonriding public about the safety issues that affect motorcyclists every time we leave our driveways,” said AMA President and CEO Rob Dingman. “May typically is...

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Juror Says $2B Award in Roundup Cancer Trial Was Intended to Have ‘Punch-in-the-Gut Effect’

Jurors awarded $2 billion in punitive damages Monday to a California couple who alleged that their longtime use of Roundup weed killer caused their non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The case is the third time the maker of Roundup has been found liable for causing cancer, report the Wall Street Journal, Reuters and the Recorder. The verdict is the largest so far. Juror Doug Olsen told reporters that the verdict was intended to have a “punch-in-the-gut effect” on the maker of Roundup, according to coverage by the Recorder. Bayer AG acquired Roundup maker Monsanto last year. Plaintiffs in the case are Alva and Alberta Pilliod, whose cancers are in remission....

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Bartender Charged With Selling Liquor to Intoxicated Man Who Shot and Killed 8 People

A bartender in Plano, Texas, was arrested last week after she allegedly sold liquor to an intoxicated man before he shot and killed his estranged wife and seven other people attending a party at her home. Police charged Lindsey Glass with violating a law making it a misdemeanor to negligently sell alcohol to a “habitual drunkard or an intoxicated or insane person,” report the Washington Post, the Dallas Morning News, Fox 4, NBC News and the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Glass is accused of serving alcohol to Spencer Hight when Glass was bartending at the Local Public House in September 2017. Hight killed Meredith Hight and seven other people...

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Leaking Breast Implants Leave Women Fighting Infections, Insurers

Insurers can deny coverage for treatment related to infections caused by breast implants, causing a budding advocacy movement. “The insurers use the fact that there’s no true medical definition for breast implant illness as an opportunity to try not to pay for it,” said Scot Glasberg, a former president of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Women who have suffered from breast implant illness are asking the FDA for help, but the agency can’t do much when it comes to insurance coverage. Leaking implants can cause a variety of illnesses, but women who need them removed face a series of obstacles from...

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After Hundreds of Crashes Britax Jogging Stroller Faced Recall

The crashes were brutal. With no warning, the front wheel on the three-wheeled BOB jogging strollers fell off, causing the carriages to careen and even flip over. Adults shattered bones. They tore ligaments. Children smashed their teeth. They gashed their faces. One child bled from his ear canal. Staff members at the Consumer Product Safety Commission collected 200 consumer-submitted reports from 2012 to 2018 of spontaneous failure of the stroller wheel, which is secured to a front fork by a quick-release lever, like on a bicycle. Nearly 100 adults and children were injured, according to the commission. The agency’s staff members...

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New State Rules Face Challenge in Curbing Illegal Dumping

The DEC now requires detailed tracking of construction and demolition debris leaving New York City in the wake of illegal dumping at Roberto Clemente Park. Spurred by illegal dumping at Roberto Clemente Park in Brentwood, the state Department of Environmental Conservation enacted its first major overhaul of solid waste management regulations in more than 20 years. Since early 2018, most New York City construction and demolition debris — like the 40,000 tons of contaminated material dumped at Clemente — now requires enhanced analysis from the facilities that process and reuse it, and enhanced tracking of the trucks that take it away. Any load from...

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Fisher-Price Recalls Rock ’n Play Sleeper Linked to Infant Deaths

Fisher-Price recalled all of its 4.7 million Rock ’n Play sleepers on Friday, days after a group of pediatricians urged its parent company, Mattel, to stop selling the product amid reports linking it to multiple infant deaths. The Consumer Product Safety Commission said consumers should stop using the sleeper immediately and contact Fisher-Price for a refund or a voucher. Major retailers sell the product for $40 to $149, according to the agency. The voluntary move by Fisher-Price was a reversal for the company, which issued a joint safety warning with the product safety commission last week after the commission said it was aware of...

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NY State Budget Cuts City Public Health Funding by $59M

The state's $175.5 billion budget includes a $59 million cut to public health funding for the city Health Department, Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Monday. The budget lowered the state's reimbursement for health services provided by the city to a minimum of 20%, compared with 36% for all other municipalities statewide. De Blasio said the funding is used for newborn home visits; clinics that treat STDs, HIV and tuberculosis; and public health response services that have been used for Legionnaires' disease, West Nile and Zika. It is also used to combat opioid addiction and test updated vaccines for diseases such as measles and...

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