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Pennsylvania’s Autonomous Vehicles Testing Policy Task Force has created some recommendations for PennDOT to review regarding the testing of Highly Automated Vehicles (HAVs). The public even had the chance to be involved, with the ability to ask questions and review the report during an online public forum that occurred earlier this month. This technology could be the future for transportation, so it was vital that safety as well as modernization were both kept at the highest importance during testing.

“Autonomous and connected vehicles will change transportation and could bring benefits of safer travel and greater ease of mobility for all if rules are in place to ensure passenger and pedestrian safety,” said PennDOT Secretary Leslie S. Richards in a press release. “Since HAVs will bring major changes to our transportation system, it is vital for Pennsylvanians to be informed and engaged in this process, so I encourage the public to participate in the Dec. 12 on-line forum.”

Some key highlights from the recommendations included restricting testing on only certain routes, ensuring PennDOT is notified when any HAV is tested without an operator, and more.

There’s nothing better than the smile on a child’s face when they are given ice cream, but that smile can’t come at the cost of safety. Blue Bell Ice Cream has recalled some of their Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough and Cookie Two Step ice cream products. The recall affects the Sylacauga, Alabama plant, where a potential listeria outbreak is suspected.

This is not Blue Bell’s first encounter with a listeria-related recall. In 2015, three deaths connected to a Blue Bell listeria outbreak resulted in a national recall. In this case, the following ten states are carriers of products from the Alabama plant: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. No illnesses have been reported thus far.

In a press release, the company stated, “Although our products in the marketplace have passed our test and hold program, which requires that finished product samples test negative for Listeria monocytogenes, Blue Bell is initiating this recall out of an abundance of caution.”

When food product recalls occur, there is always a harmful or potentially harmful reason behind them. Most companies try to be as transparent as they can, but in some cases, that potential danger may be something you are not too familiar with. There are so many things that can affect or jeopardize a product and lead to a recall. Here are some of the common perpetrators behind food product recalls and the basics about each.

Listeria

From hot dogs to frozen vegetables, Listeria can send numerous products directly to the garbage or returned to their seller. A bacterium that infects and contaminates food, Listeria has around 15 species and can lead to serious illness or even death. According to the CDC, Listeria mostly affects older adults, pregnant women, newborns and adults with weakened immune systems. Symptoms include headaches, fevers, muscle aches, confusion, a loss of balance and convulsions. For pregnant women, the bacterium can cause premature delivery, stillbirth and miscarriages.

Kristiana Burrell lived in Fairview, North Carolina, where she was raising her six children, three of her own and three step-children. She made the decision to take an extra measure in her birth control plan and spoke to her gynecologist about an Essure implant.

After having the birth control device placed in her body, Kristiana continued to use traditional birth control methods as well, which is suggested by both Bayer – the drug manufacturer – and gynecologists who prescribe an Essure device. However, Essure failed her and she found herself pregnant with what would be her seventh child.

The Burrell family took the news of a new family member in a positive light and starting preparing for their new addition. They were very excited and started preparing for the baby immediately. But just 27 weeks into the presidency, tragedy struck.

IKEA has issued a recall of nearly 29 million chests and dressers that have already been involved with the deaths of six children, and threatens many more. The recall represents one of the most comprehensive consumer safety recalls in American history.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) released a video (see below) demonstrating the dangers these products have on children. Using a mannequin child, the video depicts that when a child goes to open a drawer, and the dresser or chest is not properly anchored to the wall, the drawer along with the entire piece can fall forward onto the child.

When it comes to our children, there is no such thing as being “too safe.”

Earlier this month, a popular children’s applesauce pouch brand voluntarily recalled pouches dated between December of last year through March 2017. The reason for the recall comes from health inspection findings by the Michigan State Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD), where food product residue was discovered in the factory pumps. Thankfully, no illnesses of any kind have been reported in connection with the pouches.

The company, GoGo squeeZ, released a statement saying that no evidence of residue has been found in the applesauce, and that they ensure nothing short of extensive product testing.

A popular children’s car seat manufacturer has decided to recall thousands of car seats due to easily loosened internal harnesses.

The company, EvenFlo, will recall 56,000 harnesses that possess a front button on the harness that can be adjusted by the child wearing it if it is in reach.

Tampering with such a harness can lead to increased chance or more severe injury should the car get into an accident.

After facing major consequences for faulty emissions tests, Volkswagen faced yet another vehicle recall for potentially fatal airbags.

The car manufacturer initially refused a government mandated recall to fix the defective airbags, claiming that recalling the vehicles was unnecessary. Eventually, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website, Volkswagen cooperated and went through with the recall.

The recalled vehicles include U.S. Audi and VW vehicles between the years 2006 to 2014. There are roughly 850,000 vehicles involved in the recall. In a letter to the safety agency, Volkswagen argued against the recall by stating that many of the vehicles had perfectly functioning airbags made at the Takata factory in Germany.

A Pennsylvania meat packing company is recalling a little more than 1,300 pounds of beef products due to mislabeling.

The packaged meat may contain pork and the additive erythorbate, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service.

The recalled meats are 1 lb. plastic shrink-wrapped “BERKS Heat & Serve Knockwurst” links with establishment number “EST. 8782.”

More than 390,000 Ford Ranger pickup trucks are being recalled due to overly strong driver’s side air bags.

The airbags in the recalled 2004-2006 vehicles have been found to cause injury upon release. The faulty airbags played a role in the death of 52-year-old Joel Knight, a South Carolina native whose truck crashed and caused deadly shrapnel to penetrate his neck.

In addition to Knight’s accident, the airbags are responsible for nine other deaths and more than 100 injuries. Many of the airbags have also simply failed lab tests as well.

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