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April 2012 Archives

Fire alarms save lives in Marlborough apartment fire

Fire officials say that an effective alarm system was one of the major factors in preventing injuries earlier this week in a six-alarm apartment fire. 32 families have been displaced by the blaze, which authorities say started in the attic. The fire apparently completely destroyed that portion of the building and fire officials say that everyone is fortunate to have gotten out quickly.

Segway accidents in legal grey area

Although the two-wheeled "personal transporters" may be the subject of some jokes, the level of injury they can cause is anything but funny. The motorized scooter-like vehicles can reach significant speeds and are often used by tourists or other inexperienced riders, leading to injuries that a 2012 study called "severe trauma."

Industry ignoring reports of faulty defibrillators

Recent problems with several different models of heart defibrillators have led regulators and safety advocates to question the level of accountability in the medical device industry. Specifically, it seems that device makers receive reports of patient fatalities that are likely linked to a specific defect, but they fail to warn doctors or the public about the risk.

Regulators investigate BMW crashes

A federal investigation continues into an alleged defect in BMW 7-series cars. Complaints have been coming in to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration about problems with the transmission of the luxury cars. So far, about 50 complaints have been received and regulators have found that 16 car accidents were caused by transmission problems in that model car. Only 5 injuries have been reported in these accidents.

Faulty bike may have caused fatal crash

It seems that streets everywhere in Massachusetts are being shared by motor vehicles and bicycles. Bike riders are sometimes out for exercise and at other times may be out to simply enjoy the scenery. A recreational cyclist might cruise at speeds of about 15 miles per hour. A serious cyclist can reach speeds approaching 30 miles per hour.

Tax day spike in deadly car accidents

High stress and driving do not mix. Impulsive, distracted driving and road rage can lead to serious accidents. A new report finding that deadly car crashes spike on tax day probably does not come as a surprise. This April 17th, when behind the wheel in Milton or throughout Massachusetts, be wary of stress, taxes, and the potential for dangerous driving.

Diet drug seeking FDA approval despite dangerous side effects

The diet drug Qnexa has already been rejected by the Food and Drug Administration once before in 2010 as a result of serious safety concerns. Yet, the manufacturer has re-applied and asked the FDA to make the drug the only prescription diet pill on the market. The pill is supposed to help dieters lose about 10% of their weight in combination with diet and exercise. The manufacturer also says that the drug helps lower blood pressure, reduce diabetes, and mitigate other cardiovascular risk factors.

Apple sued for unsafe retail stores

An 83-year-old woman is suing technology giant Apple Computers, over what she says are unsafe conditions in their retail stores. The premises liability action came out of a 2011 injury sustained by the woman when she visited an Apple store to return an iPhone.

Texting may impair drivers just as much as drinking

Many drivers think it's harmless to type out a simple text message while waiting at a stop light or sitting in traffic. While it may be acceptable to send a text while the car is not moving, studies have shown that sending a text while moving takes the drivers eyes off the road for a dangerous 4.6 seconds. According to law enforcement officers, this level of distraction can put drivers at the same risk of getting in to a car accident as drivers who are intoxicated.

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