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Maryland 195 articles

NTSB Preparing To Report On Deadly Maryland Apartment Explosion

Federal investigators are expected to release a preliminary report any day that could cast some light on what triggered a massive natural gas explosion that destroyed a Maryland apartment building, killing seven people and injuring dozens more. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) plans to issue its first report sometime within the next 14 business days.  The report will detail the probable cause of the deadly blast at the Flower Branch apartment complex in Silver Spring, an NTSB official told the Montgomery (Maryland) County Council Tuesday. The NTSB, an investigative agency typically associated with probes of significant surface transportation and ... Read More

Hepatitis A Outbreak Linked To Strawberry Smoothies Spreads to Eight States

An outbreak of Hepatitis A linked to frozen strawberries from Egypt used by a smoothie chain has grown to include at least 119 people in eight states, federal health officials reported Friday. The report does not include an additional four cases reported in Virginia around the same time, which brings the national total to 123 infections. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said that the illnesses have led to 47 hospitalizations, with the vast majority of cases being reported in Virginia. In August, Virginia Department of Health officials linked the growing outbreak to Tropical Smoothie Café restaurants ... Read More

Zika fear kills Millions of Honeybees in South Carolina as a result of Aerial Pesticide Spraying

Poor planning and execution on the part of Dorchester County, S.C., officials eager to combat the spread of Zika virus resulted in the mass killing of millions of honeybees, leaving bee farms and backyard apiaries lifeless across several square miles. County officials concerned about reports of 40 travel-related cases of Zika infection in South Carolina, including four within Dorchester County, chose to blanket 15 square miles with the bee-toxic pesticide Naled Aug. 28. While the county is used to spraying for mosquitoes on the ground, this was the first time they have dumped the pesticide from an airplane. By Monday ... Read More

West Virginia Woman Develops Pneumonia After Vaping

A 31-year-old West Virginia resident had only been vaping for three months when she developed a chronic cough. She was suddenly plagued by other symptoms as well: shortness of breath, weight loss and labored breathing, which are all symptoms of hypersensitivity pneumonia. When she sought medical care, she was admitted into the hospital and quickly transported to the intensive care unit due to failing lungs. Soon after being admitted, the woman went into respiratory failure. A ventilator was required to keep her breathing comfortably. Doctors at the West Virginia University Health Sciences Center said the woman had started smoking e-cigarettes in an ... Read More

Investigators Confirm Natural Gas Sparked Deadly Maryland Apartment Blast

Federal investigators confirmed Friday that a natural gas leak caused a deadly explosion and fire that leveled two apartment buildings in Silver Spring, Md., killing seven people and injuring 30 others, including three firefighters. The explosion occurred around 11:50 p.m. Aug. 10 at the Flower Branch Apartments, where weeks before one resident had called 911 to complain of strong natural gas odors in the area. Several other residents of the complex told the press that there was a persistent smell of gas for weeks. Some 300 investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms ... Read More

Two Dead, Several Missing After Giant Explosion Levels Maryland Apartment Building

Two people are dead and several missing after a massive explosion rocked a Silver Spring, Md., apartment building late Wednesday night. Montgomery County officials responding to the blast said Thursday that the blast and fire that consumed the building injured 31 residents, many with smoke inhalation, burn injuries, and broken bones. Three firefighters were also injured fighting the flames. At least seven people remain unaccounted for. Authorities said there were men, women, and children among the missing but they did not disclose their identities Thursday. The explosion occurred about 11:50 p.m. in one of the Flower Branch Apartment buildings on ... Read More

False Claims Act lawsuit charges D.C. couple with evading nonresident tuition in coveted public schools

A Washington D.C. Superior Court judge handed down a harsh False Claims Act (FCA) penalty to a Maryland couple who had enrolled three children in some of D.C.’s best public schools for more than a decade. Alan and Candace Hill, both of whom are D.C. police officers, have been ordered to pay $539,000 for fraudulently enrolling their children in D.C. schools between 2003 and 2013. According to the D.C. Attorney General, the Hills and their children lived at various locations in Maryland and Virginia during that time. Mr. Hill owned a home in D.C. that he rented to tenants, using ... Read More

Pediatric breathing system recalled due to defect that can harm patients

Medical device company Dräger is recalling the VentStar Oxylog 3000 Disposable Pediatric Patient Breathing Circuit after discovering that the check valve on the circuit may leak. This could result in patient re-breathing exhaled gas with reduced oxygen concentration and increased carbon dioxide levels, which can lead to serious health consequences, including excessive carbon dioxide in the bloodstream and increased acidity in the blood, which can be fatal. This issue pertains only to the VentStar Oxylog 3000 Disposable Pediatric Patient Circuit. There is no issue or problem with the Oxylog 3000/3000 plus ventilator. The affected device contains the lot number 5704964, ... Read More

FDA issues warning letter to Oregon Potato Co. over listeria contamination

Washington-based Oregon Potato Co. (OPC) was slapped with a warning letter from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regarding an inspection in March during which FDA inspectors collected 19 environmental samples that tested positive for listeria, a bacteria that can cause illness. Seven of those samples were from food surfaces that had been in direct contact with onions, prompting a chain of recalls. The OPC action led to more recalls down the food chain to manufacturers and distributors who used ingredients from OPC, such as frozen vegetable seller The Pictsweet Co., and grocery giant Schnucks, who sold Pictsweet vegetables. Following the ... Read More

NTSB: Failure To De-Ice Caused Deadly Maryland Airplane Crash That Killed Six

Pilot error was the root cause of a horrific 2014 airplane crash in Gaithersburg, Md., that killed six people, including a mother and her two young sons on the ground. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said the pilot of the airplane, Dr. Michael Rosenberg, who was the president and CEO of Durham, N.C.-based Health Decisions, failed to de-ice the airplane on its approach to Montgomery County Airpark in Gaithersburg. An accumulation of ice on the wings caused the airplane to stall and it was flying too low at that point to recover, the NTSB said. “The pilot did not use the ... Read More