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South Williamsport Personal Injury Blog

Buffalo Wild Wings worker dies from cleaning chemical exposure

Restaurant workers in Pennsylvania should know what sort of hazards they face. Exposure to harmful chemicals is one of them, as an incident at a Buffalo Wild Wings in Boston illustrates. On Nov. 7, an employee at that sports bar was cleaning the kitchen floor with a sanitizer called Super 8 when he quickly became sick. A second employee tried to squeegee the chemical out, became sick as well and was taken to the hospital, where he died.

The incident occurred around 5:30 pm. Witnesses say that people were streaming out of the restaurant coughing. Ten people, including eight employees and two customers, checked into hospitals later that day with symptoms like breathing difficulties and watery, runny eyes. All were treated with oxygen, but none were in serious condition.

Traffic deaths declined overall in 2018

There was a slight decrease in the number of traffic accident deaths that occurred in 2018 compared to 2017. Data also showed that there was a 3% decrease in the number of fatalities per 100 million miles driven in 2018. Since 1975, that figure has dropped from 3.4 deaths per 100 million miles traveled to just 1.1 in 2018. However, there was an increase of pedestrians and cyclists who were killed on roadways in Pennsylvania and throughout the country.

The increase in pedestrian and cyclist deaths may cause the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to adopt new crash test standards. These guidelines would be similar to those already in use in Europe that account for accidents involving pedestrians and other groups. This would likely be included as part of an overall upgrade to crash testing and other safety standards. The NHTSA is going to draft a proposal that would be open to public comment in 2020.

High pesticide exposure levels raise risk of heart attack, stroke

The results of a new study should alert employers in Pennsylvania to the need for providing the right personal protective equipment to workers. A study from the University of Hawaii has found that men who are exposed to high levels of pesticides run a higher risk of suffering stroke or heart attack.

Researchers looked at 7,557 Japanese-American men who had participated in the Kuakini Honolulu Heart Program, a separate study that had taken place from 1965 to 1999. To determine the level of pesticides that the men were exposed to at work, researchers utilized data from OSHA. It turns out that excessive pesticide exposure led to a 45% increase in the chance for heart attack or stroke.

Prevention of car accidents can avoid injuries and death

One of the most common ways in which Pennsylvanians suffer injuries and death is in car accidents. The roads can be a dangerous place for drivers, motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians. While it is important to know what steps to take after a crash, it can also be useful to understand how to prevent these auto accidents from happening.

Although many car accidents are unavoidable, there are strategies that can prevent them. For drivers, one of the simplest safety tactics is to always keep at least one hand on the steering wheel. Maintaining contact with the steering wheel allows a driver to be prepared for sudden obstacles and occurrences. Distracted driving has quickly become one of the most common causes of auto accidents. Drivers should not use their cellphone for any reason unless they have a hands-free device.

Does not getting enough sleep really affect driving ability?

Getting enough sleep seems to be a chronic problem for most people. Between work and personal obligations, it often takes a back seat to other things. If you have young children, you certainly understand how it feels to suffer from sleep deprivation.

Even though you are tired, you still have to go about your daily life, which may involve getting behind the wheel of your car. You may have heard somewhere that driving drowsy can be dangerous, but you may not fully understand just how much.

Safety technologies reduce car crashes, study shows

Many people in Pennsylvania are excited about the potential of automated safety features to significantly reduce the number of dangerous crashes on the roadway. Automatic emergency braking and other high-level safety technologies have reduced rear-end collisions by 46%, according to a study released by General Motors. Reverse automatic braking reduced the likelihood of back-out collisions by 81% when installed, according to the report. Safety experts said that using these technologies could make for safer roadways for everyone. They also said that the more autonomous technologies were installed on a vehicle, the greater the level of safety improvement.

These technologies, often called advanced driver assistance systems, or ADAS, are meant to cut down on severe car accidents that lead to catastrophic injuries and fatalities. The study aimed to assess their effectiveness by comparing crash data compiled by police in 10 states. With VIN data from GM, researchers were able to determine which cars had these safety technologies installed and which ones did not and compare those numbers to the overall population of vehicles in the area. They found significant positive results from a number of different technologies. Blind-spot-detection devices were able to reduce collisions by 26% while intelligent headlights decreased nighttime collisions with animals, pedestrians and bikes by 21%.

What's being done to advance research on rare cancers

Medical centers in Pennsylvania and across the U.S. cannot offer many treatment options when it comes to rare cancers, and this is one of the greatest challenges that patients have to face. It stems from the fact that rare tumors are difficult to study. With not enough patients who can be gathered for group clinical trials, doctors only have individual case reports to go off. Furthermore, there are few doctors who specialize in rare cancers in the first place.

However, cancer treatments that target genetic mutations rather than the location where the cancer originated may improve how rare cancers are dealt with. For example, the DNA in some tumors cannot repair itself. This condition is known as a mismatch repair deficiency and can be found in both rare cancers like rhabdomyosarcoma and frequently reported cancers like breast, prostate and colon cancer. Several immunotherapy drugs exist that can treat the deficiency; therefore, they can be useful for these rare cancers.

Tips to avoid getting into a car accident

It may not feel like it, but the road can be a very dangerous place. You probably drive your car almost every day without even thinking about the potential of getting into a car accident. The unfortunate truth is that car accidents are fairly common. In 2017, there were 128,188 car accidents in Pennsylvania. These crashes led to 80,612 injuries and 1,137 deaths.

Given the amount of damage that a car accident can cause, it is only natural to do everything in your power to avoid getting into one yourself. Taking a few simple precautions can help protect both yourself and the people you share the road with.

What to know about lead exposure

Lead is a naturally occurring metal that workers in Pennsylvania and across the country may come into contact with. It is used in a variety of products such as lead-acid batteries, fishing weights and solder. Until 1977, it was a key ingredient in paint used in homes and commercial buildings. Typically, workers will be exposed to lead in fumes that they breathe in or by coming into contact with lead dust.

Those who work in construction or manufacturing are most likely to interact with lead on a regular basis. Lead exposure can occur while creating, using or recycling products that contain this element. For example, a construction worker could be exposed to lead after tearing down a building or while installing or maintaining a pipe. It is also possible to come into contact with lead after accidentally swallowing or otherwise ingesting it.

Steering clear of distracting activities while behind the wheel

Each year, thousands of people in Pennsylvania get injured in car crashes that involve a distracted driver. Everything from phone use to eating and drinking can take a driver's attention from the road. That's why these distracting activities should be avoided. Drivers should put their phones on "do not disturb" mode and only call after pulling over to the side of the road.

That's not all. Even conversations with passengers can become a danger, especially when there are many passengers. Therefore, drivers may want to set a limit on how many people they take with them. The front-seat passenger may be of benefit, though, by checking on traffic conditions and plotting navigation for the driver.

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