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Orlando 76 articles

Autopilot Problems Reported Before Deadly Orlando Crash, NTSB Says

Federal safety investigators say they haven’t yet determined what caused an experienced pilot to lose control of his private airplane and crash into an Orlando lake Nov. 20, but evidence so far indicates he was experiencing problems with the plane’s autopilot system. Robert Stimmel, 61, and his wife Maria Stimmel, 45, were killed when the six-passenger Beechcraft Bonanza flew out of control and nose-dived into Clear Lake about 12 minutes after taking off from Orlando Executive Airport at 11:27 a.m. The couple, residents of Washington State, was bound for Gainesville Municipal Airport in Texas. Mr. Stimmel frantically radioed air-traffic controllers ... Read More

Petty Holdings cited $7,000 in workplace violations following death of driving instructor

Petty Holdings, owner of Richard Petty Driving Experience at the now-demolished Walt Disney World Speedway, was recently cited $7,000 in fines related to the death of an on-site instructor, Gary Terry, who died when the Lamborghini he was a passenger in crashed into a guardrail end. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the citations involved the guardrails, which were not continuous through the whole track and did not have guard barriers at their ends. The vehicles also needed to run counterclockwise due to the track’s layout and guardrail placement. The Exotic Driving Experience cars were running clockwise ... Read More

Statins linked to increased risk of cataracts

Statin drugs, such as the widely prescribed Lipitor, are used to lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes. But they can come at a price. Statins side effects range from debilitating muscle aches and liver injury, to an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Studies also indicate that statin use may also increase the users’ risk of developing cataracts. Two recent studies, one from U.S. researchers and the other from Canadian scientists, each involving hundreds of participants, have linked statin use to a greater likelihood of developing cataracts. Cataracts are a clouding of the lens ... Read More

NASA Contractor Sued For Alleged Tire-Replacement Fraud

United States prosecutors have filed a False Claims Act lawsuit against a NASA contractor and subcontractor, alleging the two companies cheated the national space agency out of hundreds of thousands of dollars with a scheme that involved changing vehicle tires excessively. Federal prosecutors say that URS Federal Solutions Inc., a NASA contractor and subcontractor Yang Enterprises Inc. submitted more than one thousand fraudulent claims for undocumented and unnecessary, premature tire replacements on cars used at Kennedy Space Center in Florida. URS and Yang were responsible for overseeing a General Services Administration (GSA) fleet of about 400 vehicles at the Space ... Read More

The Fraud List: Adventist Health System demonstrates a history of health care fraud

The Fraud List

Adventist Health System is a non-profit health care organization run by the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The Altamonte Springs, Fla.-based organization network encompasses about 45 hospital campuses in 10 Southern and Midwestern states in addition to a number of urgent care centers, home health care and hospice centers, and nursing homes, making it the largest Protestant-affiliated non-profit health care provider in the U.S. Adventist Health says its organization “incorporates Christian values at every level of service” and conducts its business “with integrity, honesty and fairness,” yet somehow these values have led it into numerous multimillion-dollar settlements to resolve allegations of fraud, most ... Read More

Orlando construction firm settles whistleblower allegations with U.S.

ORLANDO, Fla. – Air Ideal Inc., a general construction and HVAC firm, and its majority owner have agreed to pay the U.S. $250,000 to and five percent revenues for the next five years to resolve a whistleblower’s False Claims Act allegations that the company made false statements to the Small Business Administration (SBA) in order to obtain certification as a “Historically Underutilized Business Zone” (HUBZone) company. The whistleblower complaint alleged that Air Ideal and its principal owner Kim Amkraut applied to the HUBZone program in 2010, claiming the company’s main office was located in a zone that qualified for the ... Read More

Whistleblower lawsuit against Adventist hospital network recovers $5.4 million for U.S.

A Florida oncologist will receive more than $1 million for his role in exposing False Claims Act violations in several Florida hospitals operated by the Adventist Health System Sunbelt Healthcare Corporation. The U.S. Justice Department said that Adventist has agreed to pay $5,412,502 to settle allegations filed in a whistleblower complaint by Dr. Michael Montejo, a radiation oncologist and former employee of Florida Oncology Network P.A., a radiation oncology group. In his lawsuit, Dr. Montejo claimed that several Adventist hospitals in Florida were providing radiation oncology services to Medicare and TRICARE (the Defense Department’s health care program) beneficiaries that weren’t ... Read More

Lawsuit for Takata airbag death reveals horrific blast injuries

A lawsuit filed by the family of a Texas man who was killed January 18 when a Takata-made airbag exploded in his Honda Accord describes the injuries that the defective safety devices are capable of inflicting, even when the accidents that cause them to deploy aren’t severe. Carlos Solis, 35, was driving his 2002 Honda Accord in Spring, Texas, when an oncoming car traveling about 30 mph clipped the font-left corner of his vehicle as it was stopped. Although mild, the impact triggered the airbag to deploy. Instead of properly inflating, however, the Takata airbag exploded like a bomb with ... Read More

Injuries from Takata exploding airbags often resemble bullet and knife wounds

Motorists injured by exploding airbags made by Japanese supplier Takata often look like they have been stabbed or shot, CNN reported, citing police who responded to emergencies involving the potentially deadly airbags. In September 2013, Police who first arrived at the scene of a minor car accident in Alhambra, Calif., thought that the driver, Hai Ming Xu, had sustained a gunshot to the face. But Mr. Hai wasn’t the victim of foul play. He was simply maneuvering his 2002 Acura TL in the parking lot of a restaurant where he worked when he accidentally struck the wall of an adjoining ... Read More

U.S. backs whistleblower lawsuit against Florida contracting services firm

The U.S. government has chosen to intervene in a whistleblower lawsuit filed under the U.S False Claims Act against Air Ideal Inc., an Orlando, Fla.-based contracting services company and its owner. The lawsuit alleges the company fraudulently misclassified itself as a Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone) company in order to win government contracts for which it wasn’t eligible. The U.S. Justice Department said that Air Ideal and its owner, Kim Amkraut, applied for the HUBZone program in 2010, claiming that the company’s principal office was located in a designated zone. The HUBZone program allows companies that have their primary office ... Read More