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Kansas 341 articles

Ford Recalls 2 Million F-150 Trucks For Seatbelt-Related Fires

Ford is recalling about two million of its F-150 pickup trucks after receiving multiple reports of the explosives-activated seatbelt pretensioners starting fires inside the vehicles. The recall, announced Sept. 6, covers certain 2015-2018 Regular Cab and SuperCrew Cab F-150 models. According to Ford, the problem stems from the pretensioners at the base of the seatbelt on both the driver and front passenger seatbelts. The pretensioner mechanisms in the recalled models rely on small explosives that ignite during a crash, forcing the seatbelt to tighten and restrain the occupant. Some pretensioners, mainly in older vehicles, rely on a spring mechanism to ... Read More

Man’s Death from Burns Sparks Second Space Heater Recall

An electric space heater manufacturer joined federal safety regulators in re-announcing the recall of thousands of electric space heater fans after a Minnesota man died of burn injuries he sustained in a December 2017 house fire. Vornado LLC of Andover, Kansas, originally recalled about 350,000 VH101 Personal Vortex electric space heaters in April over the risk of fire and burn injuries. On Aug. 22, the company re-announced the recall after the Minnesota death was linked to one of the space heaters. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the recalled space heaters “can overheat when in use, posing ... Read More

Whistleblower’s False Claims Lawsuit Recovers $5.25 Million From Lincare

Lincare Inc., a major U.S. supplier of medical oxygen and other respiratory therapies, has agreed to pay the U.S. $5.25 million to settle a whistleblower lawsuit alleging it violated the federal False Claims Act and Anti-Kickback Statute by offering illegal discounts to Medicare beneficiaries. Based in Clearwater, Florida, Lincare operates about 1,000 locations across the U.S. According to a False Claims Act lawsuit filed by whistleblower Brian Thomas and supported by the federal government, Lincare attempted to gain a competitive edge in the marketplace by unlawfully waiving or reducing co-insurance, co-payments, and deductibles for beneficiaries who participated in a Medicare ... Read More

Researchers Study Collision Injury Risks Drones Pose to Humans

More than 100,000 drone operators have obtained a Remote Pilot Certificate to fly a drone for commercial and recreational purposes since the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) small drone rule took effect on Aug. 29, 2016. But while the purpose of that rule was to protect larger aircraft from the hazards of drones flying in their airspace, little was known about might happen when a wayward drone collides with a person or group of people. To understand the personal-injury risks drones pose to people on the ground, the FAA assembled a consortium of university, industry, and government researchers to study the risks. The ... Read More

Worker accident halts construction in part of Razorback Stadium

A construction worker on the third-floor lobby of the Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville was hospitalized after he fell from a ladder while doing ceiling work. University Police Deputy David Robertson said it appeared the man may have touched a hot wire and gotten thrown off the ladder. Another worker caught the man. The unidentified fall victim was “alert” and breathing when he was loaded onto the ambulance mid-morning Wednesday. He was taken to Washington Regional Medical Center, Robertson said. CDI Contractors stopped work in the Frank Broils Athletic Center, located at the north ... Read More

Gavilon Grain Faces Sharp Penalties After Grain Engulfment Deaths

An Omaha, Nebraska-based grain company faces more than half a million dollars in penalties after two workers perished in a grain engulfment accident. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) said it assessed penalties of more than $507,000 against Gavilon Grain LLC for safety failures that led to the grain engulfment deaths of two workers in Wichita, Kansas, last January. Joshua Rasbold, 28, and Marcus Tice, 32, were working in a Gavilon soybean storage elevator when they fell into the grain and were buried under 25 feet of dried soybeans. It took rescuers two hours to pull the bodies ... Read More

Sen. McCaskill Seeks Duck Boat Safety Measures

U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill (D-Missouri) has drafted new legislation that would require the duck boat industry to implement safety measures that could prevent the amphibious vehicles from sinking like the one that killed 17 people in her home state July 19. McCaskill bases her proposed legislation on recommendations the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) urged nearly two decades ago after the Miss Majestic duck boat sank in Arkansas, killing 13 people. Those recommendations included adding flotation measures that would keep the duck boats upright and afloat when flooded and getting rid of the overhead canopies that can trap people underwater ... Read More

Duck Boat Co. Didn’t Address Sinking and Drowning Dangers, Inspector Says

Duck boats like the one that sank in Branson, Missouri, July 19, killing 17 people, have major design flaws that put them at risk of sinking – and their occupants at risk of drowning – a private inspector warned the duck boat operator less than a year ago. Steve Paul, owner of the St. Louis-based inspection service company Test Drive Technologies, told the Associated Press he issued Ride the Ducks Branson a written report in August 2017 explaining how the boat’s engines could easily fail in inclement weather, which could cause the vessel to sink. Mr. Paul told the AP ... Read More

Crop dusting accident claims life of volunteer fire chief

Wheatley, Arkansas, Volunteer Fire Chief Chad Mclain was killed earlier this month in a crop duster crash in St. Francis County about 70 miles east of Little Rock, the Wheatley Fire Service reported. The plane went down the morning of July 11 in a field off Highway 78 north of Wheatley. The Arkansas Department of Emergency Management is supporting the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) in the investigation. Chief Mclain, 42, had been a member of the Wheatley Volunteer Fire Department since 1994, and was a local farmer and agriculture pilot for Chism Flying Service. His plane was spotted going ... Read More

New Mexico Tractor-Trailer Deemed a Public Hazard After Deadly Crash

A New Mexico-licensed tractor-trailer driver was arrested and ordered off the roads after an inspection following a deadly crash in Kansas turned up multiple violations. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) said that on June 13, commercial truck driver Evaristo Mora was driving a tractor-trailer through a work zone on U.S. 54 in Pratt County, Kansas, when his vehicle veered into oncoming traffic. Mr. Mora’s truck collided with another tractor-trailer head-on, killing the driver of that truck and a passenger in the cab of Mr. Mora’s vehicle. According to the FMCSA, Mr. Mora had been driving despite having an ... Read More