2-year-old dies in car in 100ºF heat with windows rolled up

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Friday, August 24, 2007

A two-year-old girl was found dead inside a car yesterday in Union Township, Clermont County, Ohio

The car was parked outside the Glen Este Middle School with all windows rolled up. High temperatures in the area reached 100ºF (~38ºC). Police said that the girl had been inside the car for hours before her death.

A friend of the family said the child was Cecelia Slaby, however police are not reporting any personal information.

The car was registered to the school’s vice principal, Brenda Nesselroad-Slaby. The school staff had to report to work to prepare for the start of school next week.

The family friend that identified the girl also told News 5 in Cincinnati that Nesselroad-Slaby was scheduled to attend a 7 a.m. meeting, but decided that was too early in the day to drop off Cecelia, so she ran several errands instead. The source said Cecelia likely fell asleep in the car and Nesselroad forgot about her when she did go to the school, as she usually does not care for the child in the morning. However, police have not released any specific details. The family friend described Nesselroad as “mother of the year.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says the temperature inside a closed vehicle setting in sunlight can raise nearly 20 Fahrenheit degrees (11 Celsius degrees) in just three minutes. Another three or four minutes, and the administration says a car’s temperature can reach 125ºF (~52ºC). Heatstrokes occur when the body reaches a temperature of 104ºF (40ºC).

No charges have been filed. An autopsy has been scheduled.

Texas federal judge says drafting only men violates United States Constitution

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Monday, February 25, 2019

On Friday, a federal judge in Texas ruled the United States federal government’s practice of registering men but not women for the draft, or military conscription, is unconstitutional.

In response to a lawsuit by the men’s rights group National Coalition for Men, U.S. District Judge Gray Miller ruled the male-only draft violated the Due Process Clause of the United States Constitution. He said the rationale for difference along gender lines from a previous Supreme Court ruling, that women were ineligible to serve in combat, no longer applies. Women, who make up 16% of the U.S. military enlisted and 18% of officers as of 2016, according to nonprofit CNA, have been serving official combat roles since 2015.

“While historical restrictions on women in the military may have justified past discrimination,” reads Judge Miller’s statement, “men and women are now ‘similarly situated for purposes of a draft or registration for a draft.’ […] If there ever was a time to discuss ‘the place of women in the Armed Services,’ that time has passed.”

By law, all male permanent residents of the United States over the age of 18 must register for the Selective Service System. This both renders them eligible for certain public services and identifies them for the draft, or military conscription, were a draft to be imposed.

Part of the judge’s statement reads “the average woman could conceivably be better suited physically for some of today’s combat positions than the average man, depending on which skills the position required. Combat roles no longer uniformly require sheer size or muscle.” He went on to cite the Supreme Court ruling permitting same-sex marriage.

The ruling was a declaration, placing no injunction on the government to immediately change the Selective Service System.

There is currently a commission engaged to study the role of the draft, and the government asked Judge Miller to delay his ruling until after they made their recommendations, but he declined. USA Today noted the commission’s scope allows it to advise including women in the draft or eliminating the draft entirely.

The last draft in the United States took place in 1973 during the Vietnam War.

As increase in digital music sales slows, record labels look to new ways to make money

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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Every September, the Apple iPod is redesigned. Last year saw the release of the iPod Nano 5th generation, bringing a video camera and a large range of colours to the Nano for the first time. But as Apple again prepares to unveil a redesigned product, the company has released their quarterly sales figures—and revealed that they have sold only 9m iPods for the quarter to June—the lowest number of sales since 2006, leading industry anylists to ponder whether the world’s most successful music device is in decline.

Such a drop in sales is not a problem for Apple, since the iPhone 4 and the iPad are selling in high numbers. But the number of people buying digital music players are concerning the music industry. Charles Arthur, technology editor of The Guardian, wrote that the decline in sales of MP3 players was a “problem” for record companies, saying that “digital music sales are only growing as fast as those of Apple’s devices – and as the stand-alone digital music player starts to die off, people may lose interest in buying songs from digital stores. The music industry had looked to the iPod to drive people to buy music in download form, whether from Apple’s iTunes music store, eMusic, Napster or from newer competitors such as Amazon.”

Mark Mulligan, a music and digital media analyst at Forrester Research, said in an interview that “at a time where we’re asking if digital is a replacement for the CD, as the CD was for vinyl, we should be starting to see a hockey-stick growth in download sales. Instead, we’re seeing a curve resembling that of a niche technology.” Alex Jacob, a spokesperson for the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, which represents the worldwide music industry, agreed that there had been a fall in digital sales of music. “The digital download market is still growing,” they said. “But the percentage is less than a few years ago, though it’s now coming from a higher base.” Figures released earlier this year, Arthur wrote, “show that while CD sales fell by 12.7%, losing $1.6bn (£1bn)in value, digital downloads only grew by 9.2%, gaining less than $400m in value.”

Expectations that CDs would, in time, become extinct, replaced by digital downloads, have not come to light, Jacob confirmed. “Across the board, in terms of growth, digital isn’t making up for the fall in CD sales, though it is in certain countries, including the UK,” he said. Anylising the situation, Arthur suggested that “as iPod sales slow, digital music sales, which have been yoked to the device, are likely to slow too. The iPod has been the key driver: the IFPI’s figures show no appreciable digital download sales until 2004, the year Apple launched its iTunes music store internationally (it launched it in the US in April 2003). Since then, international digital music sales have climbed steadily, exactly in line with the total sales of iPods and iPhones.”

Nick Farrell, a TechEYE journalist, stated that the reason for the decline in music sales could be attributed to record companies’ continued reliance on Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, saying that they had considered him the “industry’s saviour”, and by having this mindset had forgotten “that the iPod is only for those who want their music on the run. What they should have been doing is working out how to get high quality music onto other formats, perhaps even HiFi before the iPlod fad died out.”

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When Jobs negotiated a deal with record labels to ensure every track was sold for 99 cents, they considered this unimportant—the iPod was not a major source of revenue for the company. However, near the end of 2004, there was a boom in sales of the iPod, and the iTunes store suddenly began raking in more and more money. The record companies were irritated, now wanting to charge different amounts for old and new songs, and popular and less popular songs. “But there was no alternative outlet with which to threaten Apple, which gained an effective monopoly over the digital music player market, achieving a share of more than 70%” wrote Arthur. Some did attempt to challenge the iTunes store, but still none have succeeded. “Apple is now the largest single retailer of music in the US by volume, with a 25% share.”

The iTunes store now sells television shows and films, and the company has recently launced iBooks, a new e-book store. The App Store is hugely successful, with Apple earning $410m in two years soley from Apps, sales of which they get 30%. In two years, 5bn apps have been downloaded—while in seven years, 10bn songs have been purchased. Mulligan thinks that there is a reason for this—the quality of apps simply does not match up to a piece of music. “You can download a song from iTunes to your iPhone or iPad, but at the moment music in that form doesn’t play to the strengths of the device. Just playing a track isn’t enough.”

Adam Liversage, a spokesperson of the British Phonographic Industry, which represents the major UK record labels, notes that the rise of streaming services such as Spotify may be a culprit in the fall in music sales. Revenues from such companies added up to $800m in 2009. Arthur feels that “again, it doesn’t make up for the fall in CD sales, but increasingly it looks like nothing ever will; that the record business’s richest years are behind it. Yet there are still rays of hope. If Apple – and every other mobile phone maker – are moving to an app-based economy, where you pay to download games or timetables, why shouldn’t recording artists do the same?”

Well, apparently they are. British singer Peter Gabriel has released a ‘Full Moon Club’ app, which is updated every month with a new song. Arthur also notes that “the Canadian rock band Rush has an app, and the industrial rock band Nine Inch Nails, led by Trent Reznor – who has been critical of the music industry for bureaucracy and inertia – released the band’s first app in April 2009.” It is thought that such a system will be an effective method to reduce online piracy—”apps tend to be tied to a particular handset or buyer, making them more difficult to pirate than a CD”, he says—and in the music industry, piracy is a very big problem. In 2008, the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry estimated that 95% of downloads were illegitimate. If musicians can increase sales and decrease piracy, Robert says, it can only be a good thing.

“It’s early days for apps in the music business, but we are seeing labels and artists experimenting with it,” Jacob said. “You could see that apps could have a premium offering, or behind-the-scenes footage, or special offers on tickets. But I think it’s a bit premature to predict the death of the album.” Robert concluded by saying that it could be “premature to predict the death of the iPod just yet too – but it’s unlikely that even Steve Jobs will be able to produce anything that will revive it. And that means that little more than five years after the music industry thought it had found a saviour in the little device, it is having to look around again for a new stepping stone to growth – if, that is, one exists.”

News briefs:July 29, 2010

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Woman in Buffalo, New York accidentally sets herself on fire

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Buffalo, New York —A woman in Buffalo, New York in the United States is in critical condition tonight at Sisters Of Charity Hospital after she accidentally set herself on fire.

The unnamed elderly woman was receiving oxygen for medical problems in her home and lit a cigarette, and the oxygen coming from her mask facilitated the ignition of her clothing, setting her on fire.

Despite her “severe” burns as described by firefighters on radio communications, she was still able to dial the emergency line in the U.S., 911.

In the U.S. only 4% of all residential fires were reportedly caused by smoking materials in 2002. These fires, however, were responsible for 19% of residential fire fatalities and 9% of injuries. The fatality rate due to smoking is nearly four times higher than the overall residential fire rate; injuries are more than twice as likely. Forty percent of all smoking fires start in the bedroom or living room/family room; in 35% of these fires, bedding or upholstered furniture are the items first ignited.

Clearing the air: Positions of Canadian parties vis-à-vis the environment

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Thursday, September 18, 2008

Canadian Federal Elections 2008

Day
Stories from the 2008 Canadian Federal Elections
  • 13 October 2008: CanadaVOTES: Libertarian John Kittridge in St. Paul’s
  • 13 October 2008: Canadian scientists protest Harper’s attacks on science
  • 10 October 2008: CanadaVOTES: NDP candidate Paul Arbour in Carleton—Mississippi Mills
  • 10 October 2008: CanadaVOTES: NDP candidate Jo-Anne Boulding in Parry Sound—Muskoka
  • 10 October 2008: CanadaVOTES: NDP candidate David Sparrow in Don Valley West
National Parties

In the lead-up to the 2008 Canadian federal elections much speculation was made about environmental issues and initiative, with various parties maneuvering to claim some portion of the green mantle. But it was the Liberal party which first brought a full-blown policy to the public.

In the months since the Green Shift initiative was brought forth, the political pundits and activists have both talked about this year as the first election where the environment would be a major issue on the minds of voters, and possibly a decisive one for the electorate.

It’s indeed true the environment ranks very high in minds of voters across the country, particularly among young voters. One national survey of Canadians between 18 and 25 finds the environment is the top issue. A poll of all voters found it to be the third most important single issue over all, behind the economy and health care, but the poll suggested that no one issue has really caught the attention of the electorate with many issues gaining similar attention.

The parties themselves seem indecisive, trying to claim a focus on environmental issues but rarely making specific proposals or promises, with the notable exception of the Liberals whose platform has been targeted by opponents and commentators as “wildly experimental” and “doesn’t go deep enough” by turns.

Examining the platforms of the New Democratic Party regarding air pollution and global warming as available on their website, one is struck by a lack of substance. Reference is made to C-377, the Climate Change Accountability Act, which the NDP calls “Layton’s Kyoto-Plus Bill”, which was passed in 2006. The party believes Canada can achieve its Kyoto requirements by 2012, though no mention is made of how a Layton government would do so.

In June of 2008 the Liberals tabled a plan, the Green Shift, which they claim would reduce Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions 20% under 1990 emissions – well below the 6% required by Canadian law when Canada ratified the Kyoto Accord – by 2020, which is rather after the 2008-2012 phase-in period required by that same law. The method of performing this reduction would be to shift the Canadian tax system, reducing income and revenue taxes by replacing them with taxes on greenhouse gas emissions. The plan generated considerable discussion and opposition, and the party has back-pedaled in some portions and added on in others, as well as announcing a couple of separate initiatives to soften the effects for farmers, homeowners, and fishermen among others.

A more diverse approach than solely a “Carbon Tax” is proposed in the Green Party’s platform, which presents an almost holistic approach of adherence to the Kyoto obligations, “Cap and trade” of carbon emissions, industry development with both green technology R&D and regulation as well as consumer subsidies, and their own version of a carbon tax. Alone of the parties they specifically mention the role of international diplomacy/trade as a part of their approach.

Such an approach appears to be anathema to the Conservatives, whose mantra since their election has been that Kyoto cannot be complied with without forcing an economic recession on the country, and used the Throne Speech of 2007 to reiterate that position. They have opposed cap-and-trade schemes in the past, but their platform for this election states their plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions includes emissions caps for “four air pollutants commonly associated with smog and acid rain,” as well as “tough emission reduction targets”.

In contrast to the laundry-list of unconnected initiatives on the Conservative’s website, the clean platform pamphlet created by the Bloc Québécois makes a simple and apparently heartfelt statement on the environment:

La lutte aux changements climatiques est devenue un enjeu fondamental pour l’humanité et le Québec est déterminé à apporter sa contribution, à sa façon. À Ottawa, c’est le Bloc Québécois qui mène la lutte en faveur de l’application du protocole de Kyoto dans le respect des choix du Québec.
Tackling climate change has become a fundamental issue for all of humanity and Québec is determined to make its contribution, in its own way. In Ottawa, the Bloc Québécois, respecting Québec’s choices, is leading the fight to enforce the Kyoto Protocol.

Just how they plan to enforce the Kyoto obligations is not stated, though they do discuss a carbon market, and tax incentives for home heating upgrade and transportation.

There seems to be a wide if somewhat shallow interest in the electorate as to just what each party is offering on the environmental file. But with sketchy platforms regarding environmental issues, it’s no wonder some of the parties have turned to the subject of economics in recent days.

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13,000 people participate in Bristol running event

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Sunday, May 18, 2008

Approximately 13,000 people in the British city of Bristol participated in either the Race for Life or the Run for Moore this weekend as part of one of the largest running events in the south west of England.

The first of the day, the woman only Race for Life, started at 11:00 local time (10:00 UTC. This continues on from yesterday, where other woman competed in the Race for Life.

The quickest finishing time for the event was around 20 minutes for the five kilometer race, with the slowest time being over an hour.

Later in the day, at approximately 14:00 local time, the warm up for the mens event started. It was lead by people on the temporary stage (pictured).

At 14:30, the mens event started. The finishing times for this event varied from about 20 minutes to approximately 50 minutes.

Before the warm up participants were shown a video showing the effects of cancer. The run is in aid of Cancer Research UK.

New Jersey to consider bikini waxing ban

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Friday, March 20, 2009

New Jersey is considering a state-wide ban on Brazilian waxes, the removal of hair from the bikini area.

Although genital waxing has never really been allowed in the state, the New Jersey Board of Cosmetology and Hairstyling plans to propose a ban with more specific legal wording, in response to two women who reported being injured during a wax. The board will consider the proposal at their next meeting on April 14.

If the measure passes, New Jersey may become the only US state to ban the practice outright.

Although millions of Americans engage in bikini waxes, which generally cost between $50 and $60 per session, the practice comes with risks. Skin care experts say the hot wax can irritate delicate skin in the bikini area, and result in infections, ingrown hairs and rashes.

Waxing on the face, neck, abdomen, legs and arms would continue to be permitted in the state under the proposed ban. Although New Jersey statutes have always banned bikini waxing, the laws were unclear and seldom enforced.

As a result, many salons from around the state have offered bikini waxing for years. Many salon owners spoke out against the proposed ban, which they said would severely damage their business.

“I really don’t know if the state can stop it at this point,” said Valentia Chistova, owner of the Monmouth County salon Brazil. “I know a lot of women who are really hooked.”

 This story has updates See New Jersey backpedals on proposed bikini waxing ban 

Europe hit by storms, 45 deaths reported

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Sunday, January 21, 2007

Europe has been hit by fierce wind and storms, with gusts over 150 kilometers per hour reported from the UK to Southern Germany. Most major motorways are blocked/shut due to lorries being overturned by the wind.

Most European Airports, Train and Motorways have been affected. Amsterdam has been cut off, with planes grounded, and the train system from Amsterdam city halted.

Contents

  • 1 Casualties and fatalities
    • 1.1 Western Europe
      • 1.1.1 United Kingdom
      • 1.1.2 Germany
      • 1.1.3 The Netherlands
      • 1.1.4 France
      • 1.1.5 Belgium
    • 1.2 Central and Eastern Europe
  • 2 Sources

According to the BBC, at least 45 people have been killed so far, with more deaths expected. Reports of numbers currently vary as the damage is assessed.

The casualties were distributed as follows:

  • United Kingdom: 13 (8 in North West England)
  • Germany: 13
  • Ireland: 7 – lost at sea
  • The Netherlands: 7
  • Poland: 6
  • Czech Republic: 4
  • Belgium: 2
  • France: 2
  • Austria: 1

The UK saw a total of eleven casualties, most of them in England. All incidents took place on January 18.

  • The first casualty of the storm was the chief of Birmingham International Airport who was killed around 05:45 GMT when his car windscreen was smashed by a falling branch in Shropshire.
  • In the London district of Kentish Town, a two-year-old boy died in hospital after receiving severe head injuries. These were caused by a wall collapsing onto the boy whilst he was walking with his childminder in the afternoon of January 18.
  • A female lorry driver was killed on the A269 in Yorkshire when her vehicle overturned and was blown into a canal.
  • A male lorry driver, who was a German national, was killed on the A55 in Chester in a similar incident.
  • The front-seat male passenger of a car on the A329 was killed when a branch hit the car near Streatley, Berkshire, the driver was injured.
  • A man was blown into metal shutters at an industrial estate in Manchester and died.
  • In Byley, Cheshire, a man was hit by a tree whilst working on a construction site.
  • An elderly man was killed at Humberside by a collapsing shed.
  • A woman in Stockport was killed when a wall she tried to shelter behind collapsed onto her.
  • In Lancashire, a man was hit by a falling canopy at a petrol station whilst refuelling and later died in hospital.
  • In Woofferton, Shropshire, a lorry driver collided with another vehicle and died on the scene.

Germany was the country most severely hit by the storm, with 13 casualties as of January 21, 2007. Most deaths occurred on the 18th and 19th of January, though some victims were only injured at first and later died in hospital.

  • In the Munich bourough Milbertshofen, an 18-month old child was severely injured by a patio door that had broken out of its hinges. The child later died in hospital.
  • Near Kirrlach in the state of Baden-Württemberg, a motorist tried to avoid a tree that had fallen onto the road and crashed into an oncoming vehicle. He was pronounced dead on the scene.
  • A 73-year old man was crushed by a barn door in Gersthofen in the district of Augsburg.
  • A fireman was killed in Tönisvorst in North Rhine-Westphalia whilst performing storm cleanup work.
  • A 36-year motorist was killed in Hildesheim by a fallen tree.
  • A motorcycle driver slid under a tree in Essen, dying in hospital on January 21.
  • On the B 55 near Lippstadt, a 23-year woman was killed when her car was hit by a falling birch tree.
  • A man was killed when the gable of a nearby building collapsed in Groß Rodensleben in the state of Saxony-Anhalt.
  • In Strausberg in Brandenburg, a 25-year man crashed into a fallen tree with his car.
  • Near Finnentrop, a man died after not noticing a tree that had fallen onto the road and crashing into it.

Seven people in the Netherlands were killed as a result of the weather. Two people died when a falling tree hit their car between Arnhem and Ede. A man near Oosterhout was killed in a collision with a truck. A motorcyclist died near Leersum after a collision with a tree, as well as a 17-year old boy on a moped in Sint Oedenrode. An 11-year old boy in Riel was blown in front of a car, which drove over him. The boy died on the scene. A 59-year old man in Staphorst was blown off of the roof of his barn, as he was repairing the damage caused by the storm. Six people were injured when a crane fell through the roof of a Utrecht University building. The National Crisis Centre has advised people to stay indoors, the first time such a warning has been issued.

In France, a driving instructor in Roubaix was killed when an electricity pole fell on top of her car. The student was severely injured. A 30-year old man died near Abbeville, when a swerving truck crashed into his car. A woman in Lille is missing after the roof of a store collapsed. There was significant damage to the cathedral at Saint-Omer.

Two people in Belgium fell victim to the storm; a 16-year old girl in Halle died when a wall she was standing by collapsed and a man died in the province of Liège after a tree fell on top of his car.

In Poland, a crane operator was killed in Katowice when a 25-metre-high (82ft) crane broke in half. By January 19 a total of 6 casualties and 19 people wounded have been reported, nearly 800 thousand households lack electricity due to the damage done by the storm, about 500 were damaged.

In the Czech Republic, a fireman died in Slune?ná (Liberec Region) when the wind threw a tree trunk on him while he was clearing the road with his colleagues. Two young men died in Vestec near Prague when a tree fell on their car.

Wikinews Shorts: September 6, 2010

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Monday, September 6, 2010

President Alvaro Colom says torrential downpours causing flooding and landslides have undone the country’s reconstruction from Tropical Storm Agatha in May. Up to eighteen people are reported killed in rain-related incidents across the country as weather systems in both the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific batter the region, and forecasters expect another 48 hours of precipitation. At least ten people were killed, 20 rescued, when a landslide buried a bus as it traveled on the Inter-American highway in the worst single-incident.

Sources

Five people are dead, 39 injured after a suicide bombing in the Dagestan Republic of the North Caucasus. The information is still unfolding, and earlier reports had three killed, 26 injured. The attack occurred at 00:30 local time (20:30 UTC) when a Zhiguli car packed with explosives drove into the gates of a military base near Buynaksk. AFP reports a second explosion nearby on a nearby highway, but with no injuries.

Sources

The Arizona Cardinals US football team has released Heisman trophy-winner Matt Leinart after being unable to find a favorable trade. Leinart had been unable to break out of the back-up quarterback role with the team after early injuries kept him on the sideline for a couple years, and expressed his frustration publicly on Monday. The Cardinals, forced to trim their team roster to 53 players, cut Leinart leaving him without a team.

Sources

After driving away from police, a thirteen-year-old driver struck a pole, plowed through a couple of fences, and bumped a parked car into the house before coming to a rest at the front door. Police spokesperson Ros Wetherall reported officers attempted to stop the Holden Commodore around 1 a.m. local time (5 p.m. UTC), but had to search for the vehicle which they found crashed into the home on Grovelands Drive, Camillo. The driver and one other youth in the car were uninjured. The young man will appear in court on charges of reckless driving, failing to stop and not having a driver’s licence.

Sources