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Fruit Recalled in Several States Over Listeria Concerns

Concerns of potential Listeria monocytogenes contamination in fresh produce have prompted ALDI, Costco, Walmart, and other retailers to recall bags of peaches, nectarines, and plums from stores in several states. Listeria is a foodborne pathogen that can cause serious illness and death. The recalled produce was distributed by fruit distributor Jac Vandenberg Inc. of Yonkers, New York. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the recall affects 1,727 cartons of fresh peaches, 1,207 cartons of fresh nectarines, and 365 cartons of fresh plums. ALDI said in a recall announcement that it has removed recalled peaches, nectarines, and plums ... Read More

United Airlines Flight Stranded in Canada with Broken Door

A medical emergency forced a United Airlines flight to land in remote Newfoundland, Canada, Saturday, but it was a broken door that left the passengers and crew stranded in frigid temperatures for more than 15 hours. United Airlines Flight 179 departed from New Jersey’s Newark Liberty International Airport Saturday afternoon bound for Hong Kong but was diverted to a Canadian military base in Goose Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador, so a passenger aboard the aircraft could receive medical treatment. According to CNN, the plane landed in Goose Bay at 9:31 p.m. Medical personnel met the aircraft and transported a passenger to ... Read More

FDA food inspectors head back to work without pay

Four hundred Food and Drug Administration (FDA) workers furloughed during the partial government shutdown have been called back into work – without pay – to conduct much needed inspections for food, drugs and medical devices, according to a Tweet from FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb. The activities are necessary, he Tweeted, “to identify and respond to threats to safety of humans.” The FDA inspects 80 percent of the American food supply to ensure its safety to consumers. Of the agency’s 5,000 inspectors, 150 will be conducting food inspections at facilities considered high risk, such as those with a history of ... Read More

2018 one of safest years in aviation despite 556 fatalities

The year 2017 was the safest in aviation history with 44 people killed in 10 plane crashes. On the surface it seems 2018 was staggeringly worse, with 556 people killed in 15 fatal accidents, according to the Aviation Safety Network (ASN). However, despite the grim statistics, ASN says 2018 is still one of the safest years for commercial aviation on record, with a rate of about one fatality for every three million flights. Of the aviation accidents reported in 2017 and 2018, 12 involved passenger flights and three involved cargo flights. Three of the planes were operated by airlines that ... Read More

Massachusetts Boosts Tobacco Sales Age to 21

With the New Year comes a new Massachusetts state law boosting the minimum age for the purchase of all tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, to 21. The new law comes on the heels of data showing that teens are turning to e-cigarettes and other vaping devices in alarming numbers, rolling back decades of progress in reducing smoking rates among U.S. youth. Considering that nicotine is harmful to the developing brains of people 25 and younger, it may be surprising to know that the new law makes Massachusetts just the sixth state to restrict the sale of tobacco products to individuals 21 ... Read More

Labor department report ranks deadliest jobs in U.S.

The deadliest jobs are those that are outdoors and involve operating heavy equipment, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ newly released annual Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries. The listing includes 139 occupations or industries and ranks the 20 safest and 20 most deadly. There was a total of 5,147 fatal work injuries recorded in the U.S. last year, down from 5,190 the previous year. The death rate among workers was 3.5 per 100,000 full time employees (FTE), down from 3.6 in 2016. The most dangerous occupation was commercial fishing with 99.8 deaths per 100,000 FTE. Logging workers came ... Read More

California Romaine Grower Linked to E.Coli Outbreak Recalls Other Produce  

A California farm linked to the E. coli-contaminated romaine lettuce that triggered a massive nationwide recall is now recalling other types of produce as a precaution. Adam Bros. Farming, Inc. of Santa Maria, California, said the new recalls include red leaf lettuce, green leaf lettuce, and cauliflower harvested on Nov. 27 through Nov. 30, 2018. Although none of the produce has tested positive for the E. coli strain associated with the outbreak (E. coli O157:H7) and no illnesses have been reported, the company says it’s voluntarily recalling the extra produce out of an abundance of caution. The recalled cauliflower was ... Read More

E. Coli Linked to Romaine Lettuce Traced to Santa Barbara Farm

Romaine lettuce is starting to appear in grocery stores and restaurants again after an E. coli outbreak that sickened people in several states forced a recall of nearly all the lettuce. But if you can’t identify where the romaine was grown, it’s probably a good idea to avoid it. That’s the gist of an update from U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Scott Gottlieb. According to the announcement, federal and state investigators using traceback methods have identified one source of the outbreak as Adams Bros. Farms in Santa Barbara County, California. FDA investigators visited several potential outbreak sources to ... Read More

Opioids, benzos and stimulants the cause of most drug overdose deaths

Drug overdose deaths jumped a whopping 54 percent – to 63,632 – in the United States from 2011 to 2016, and opioids, benzodiazepines (benzos), and stimulants were the drugs most often to blame, according to a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) in the wake of the opioid epidemic. The opioid oxycodone, known by the brand name OxyContin, was the most cited drug on death certificates in 2011. But the illegal opioid heroin took the lead for the subsequent years. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, about 21 to ... Read More

Texas man files lawsuit after getting sick from romaine lettuce

The first Texas lawsuit has emerged related to the romaine lettuce scare that has sickened dozens of people in 12 states due to E. coli contamination, according to the Southeast Texas Record. Brazos County resident Joe Stratta filed a lawsuit against Beef O’Brady’s Inc., and FSC Franchise Co. LLC, on Nov. 26, in the Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas, alleging the companies manufactured and sold contaminated romaine lettuce. Stratta ate the lettuce in a Caesar salad at a Beef O’Brady’s restaurant in Crestview, Florida. Four days later, he allegedly fell ill with symptoms including “watery diarrhea and ... Read More