Author

Sarah Mahan

30 posts

Sarah Mahan joined the Beasley Allen team as a writer after dabbling in newspapers and magazines. Her work, ranging from short news pieces to in-depth features, has been previously found in several community newspapers and the Alabama Alumni Magazine. Sarah’s current position with BA includes writing online content for the firm’s websites, publications and social media along with assorted assignments for outside publications. When she’s not writing, she’s reading, debating if going for a run is actually worth it, or as a University of Alabama grad, obligatorily yelling, “Roll Tide!” with friends and family Saturdays in the fall.

Tractor-trailers carry nuclear bombs across country

yellowtruck

When driving down the interstate next to an unmarked 18-wheeler, drivers may want to think twice before weaving in and out of traffic. The Los Angeles Times reports that those unmarked 18-wheeler could contain nuclear bombs. The Times reports the Office of Secure Transportation is so covert that few people know of its existence (until now), but the office manages 42 tractor-trailers used to carry nuclear cargo across the country each day. The Times found the office is 48 agents short of its planned 370 staff members, has a history of employees with alcohol problems, and a truck fleet that ... Read More

Traditional milk takes aim at plant-based alternatives

milk - Pexels

The milk in your local grocery’s dairy aisle is claiming identity theft, and it even has a proposed bill in Congress to bolster its case. According to Fortune, the milk industry has twice attempted in the last two decades to convince the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to enforce its definition of milk, “the lacteal secretion…obtained by the complete milking of one or more healthy cows.” The definition means the almond, coconut, soy, cashew or pea milk sold in grocery stores technically doesn’t make the cut. It is a point of contention for traditional milk producers because the FDA has ... Read More

House votes to overturn portion of OSHA’s new electronic recordkeeping rule

The House of Representatives voted last week 231-191 to overturn a portion of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) new electronic recordkeeping rule. The House voted to void a portion of the rule, which took effect Dec. 1, 2016, that would have required employers to keep an accurate record of each on-the-job-injury for five years. OSHA’s final recordkeeping rule requires industries to meet electronic filing requirements and make their injury and illness information available on a public database. Several companies have filed suit claiming the new requirements are burdensome and could expose confidential information. Proponents contend making the records ... Read More

American Ladder Institute holds first National Ladder Safety Month

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Superstition says it is bad luck to walk under ladders. However, being on top of one may not be safe either, unless of course certain precautions are followed. To raise awareness about exactly what those precautions are and to warn of the consequences of not following them, the American Ladder Institute (ALI) named March 2017 its inaugural National Ladder Safety Month. “National Ladder Safety Month is the only movement dedicated exclusively to the promotion of ladder safety, at home and at work. (It) will bring heightened awareness to the importance of the safe use of ladders through resources, training and ... Read More

Keurig agrees to pay $5.8 million penalty for failing to report defect, initiate timely recall

Recall - Keurig CPSC image

Keurig Green Mountain Inc. agreed to pay a $5.8 million civil penalty — the second largest in the history of the Consumer Product Safety Commission — last week to resolve alleged charges the company withheld product defect information and delayed recalling its MINI Plus Brewing Systems in 2014. The CPSC maintains Keurig did not follow a rule that requires manufacturers, distributors and retailers to report a possible safety defect within 24 hours of obtaining reasonable supporting evidence of one. A CPSC investigation revealed Keurig received approximately 200 reports from 2010 to 2014 of hot water and coffee spewing out of ... Read More

2016 marks deadliest year of car crashes in almost a decade

seat belt crash site

The nightly news, a radio update or a social media post is as far as one needs to go to find car crash reports, and if it seems like more and more of those are deadly, they are. Preliminary data from the National Safety Council (NSC) estimates as many as 40,000 people died in car crashes last year, a six-percent increase over 2015 and a 14 percent increase over 2014, according to EHS Today. The news source reports the 2014 through 2016 stats are the most dramatic increase in 53 years, and 2016 was the deadliest year on the nation’s ... Read More

Landfill worker found dead in trash compactor after landslide

landfill - Flickr

Authorities have identified the body of a 49-year-old landfill employee who was found inside a compacting machine that was buried under 40 feet of trash after a landslide. The body of William L. Pierce, a decade-plus veteran with Advanced Disposal, was discovered Feb. 10 at the Greentree Landfill in Elk County, Pennsylvania. His body was recovered two days after a large amount of waste and dirt shifted off a large disposal area, burying large equipment and multiple workers. Though four workers escaped the slide before emergency services arrived, Pierce remained unaccounted for and crews worked for days to locate him and ... Read More

Elevated lead levels found in California industry workers’ blood

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One of a number of possible toxins that workers can potentially be exposed to, lead has made headlines lately for its toxicity in drinking water, but a new study shows lead is also an issue for California workers in munitions, manufacturing and other industries. A January 2017 study by the Occupational Health Branch of the California Department of Public Health, known as Cal/OSHA, found of the 38,440 workers who had their blood tested for lead from 2012 through 2014, 6,051 workers had elevated levels, according to PBS. An elevated lead level is considered 5 or more micrograms of lead per ... Read More

Vizio televisions allegedly recorded data without consent; company settles

Vizio, watching you - Flickr

While consumers have been watching TV, their TVs may have been watching what they were watching as well. According to a complaint filed by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the New Jersey Attorney General and the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs, consumers have been unaware that while watching their internet-connected Vizio televisions, the company was recording data on their viewing habits and transmitting it back to data servers to be sold to advertisers and others. Vizio agreed to pay $2.2 million to settle charges that  it was collecting viewer data on 11 million consumer TVs without consumers’ consent or ... Read More

Off-road vehicle accident involving Britney Spears’ niece highlights ATV safety concerns

ATV in action, Polaris - Wikimedia Commons

An off-road vehicle accident involving Britney Spears’ niece, Maddie Aldridge, 8, on Feb. 5 has heightened safety concerns over the age children can safely operate the vehicles, which are often used recreationally. Maddie was riding in a Polaris off-road vehicle at her home in Kentwood, Louisiana, when the vehicle flipped into a pond. Initial reports say Jamie Lynn Spears, stepfather Jamie Watson and other family couldn’t free her from the seat-belt and safety netting, leaving her submerged for several minutes. Emergency services eventually were able to free her and pull her out, according to USA Today. “Within seconds the child’s ... Read More