Bicyclists Have the Right to Use Atlanta Roads without Fearing for Their Lives

Bicycles are a healthy, economical, environmentally friendly way of getting around over short distances. They also reduce the number of cars in use at any given time, which can help relieve congestion on well-designed roads. Unfortunately, Atlanta’s roads are far from well-designed in many places, which has led to social conflicts and deadly collisions between motorists and cyclists. Accidents Involving Bicycles Have Risen Drastically A study by the Atlanta Regional Commission, spanning the years 2006 through 2015, reveals a sharp 53% increase in collisions involving pedestrians or bicyclists during that time. Upon further investigation, the Commission also discovered that 71% of all traffic fatalities in the city were occurring on just 6% of its streets: the low-income areas on the west side, including Peachtree Street…

The Fatal Crash of a Van Carrying Adults with Special Needs Is Under Investigation

Two people were killed and seven more injured when an InCommunity van crashed into a tractor-trailer that was stopped in a left turn lane on July 15th, 2019. InCommunity is an organization that supports adults with special needs, and the van was taking program participants with intellectual and physical disabilities home at the end of the day. The two fatalities included the driver of the van and one passenger. Six more passengers and the driver of the tractor-trailer were treated for injuries ranging from bruises to probable concussions. The circumstances surrounding the crash are currently under investigation. Many Consequences of This Crash Will Be Felt for a Lifetime The driver of the tractor-trailer likened the impact to a bomb going off. He reported attempting to…

The State of Georgia Has Failed to Protect Its Residents from Armed Abusers

In theory, domestic abusers have been forbidden from owning firearms under federal law since 1996. Properly enforced, this simple safety measure has the potential to save thousands of innocent lives, without so much as inconveniencing those gun owners who have a history of basic human decency and level-headedness. Unfortunately, more than 20 years after its passage, the law remains fraught with loopholes and only haphazardly applied. The restriction does not cover stalkers or abusive partners who have not lived with, married, or had children with their victims, for example, and even the most blatantly disqualifying crimes are often not reported to the background check databases used to determine weapon buyers’ eligibility. Most deadly of all, however, is the failure of many states to enforce the…

Residents of HUD Housing Can’t Afford to Wait for Carbon Monoxide Detectors

A rule requiring carbon monoxide detectors in public housing may be on its way, both through the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and, potentially, through federal legislation. For many low income families, however, this is already too little, too late. Carbon Monoxide Detectors Save Lives Carbon monoxide, or CO, is a deadly, colorless, odorless gas produced by the burning of carbon-based fuels. Any appliance that runs on natural gas can potentially malfunction and poison an entire home, and purpose-built sensors are the only way of detecting the gas before it reaches lethal levels. Like many public housing projects, Allen Benedict Court in South Carolina was not equipped with these life-saving devices when CO poisoning claimed the lives of two residents in January…

Gun-Related Deaths Are out of Control in Metro Atlanta’s Apartment Buildings

For the nearly 6 million people who live in the Atlanta metropolitan area, gun violence is a terrifying and tragic reality of everyday life. It has been for far too long, and is now more than ever. In 2017, 1,623 Georgia residents died by shooting. That number has been steadily climbing at a rate of 77 more deaths each year since record keeping began in 2014, and the problem is even more concentrated in and around Atlanta. In 2016, Atlanta was ranked the #18 “Murder Capitol” of the U.S, and guns were involved in 82% of all recorded homicides in the city. Just because gun violence is currently a fact of life, however, doesn’t mean that it’s acceptable or unchangeable. Shooting Deaths Are Not Inevitable…

Fisher price rock n play causing infant death

Fisher-Price Finally Recalls a Product That’s Been Tied to 32 Infant Deaths

Becoming a parent is a nerve-wracking journey. Mothers- and fathers-to-be often spend months researching everything that could possibly go wrong, and how to avoid it. The volume of conflicting information can be overwhelming, and sometimes the only way to manage the stress is to unplug and trust that everything will probably be okay. There are few things more frustrating and terrifying than finding out that your fears for your child are justified, especially when the dangers come in the form of big name baby care products, which many parents assume are the last thing they need to worry about. The Investigation Is New, but the Deaths Date Back to 2011 Just before Christmas in 2017, 5-month-old Ezra Overton rolled over and suffocated while napping in…

Gas stations need to do more to protect customers from violence

Gas Stations Need to Do More to Protect Customers from Violence

If you feel vulnerable while filling up your tank, it’s not just your imagination. According to a survey by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S gas stations are the site of approximately 63,530 violent crimes per year. That’s almost as many as hotel rooms, banks, and public transport stations put together. Such crimes are so common that they almost run together on the news. In November of 2018, a drug deal in an Atlanta gas station turned sour and became a shooting that killed two people. Less than a week later over in College Park, another pair of people were shot at a gas station, one in the face and one in the hip. The next day, another young man was fatally shot while pumping…

Film set injury

Corner-Cutting on Georgia Film Sets Puts Cast and Crew Members at Risk

It’s no secret that the selection of filming locations depends heavily on local tax laws and other financial factors. It’s also no secret that cost-cutting attempts are one of the most common reasons for neglecting worker safety. Production-friendly local policies have made Georgia one of the movie and TV capitals of the world in recent years, bolstering the state economy with both entertainment industry and tourism dollars. It’s worth recognizing, however, that the same business priorities that bring film crews to Georgia are also the priorities that keep sets unsafe and lead to preventable injuries and deaths. Stunts Aren’t Supposed to Be Deadly Stunt performer fatalities are often treated as an accepted and inherent hazard of the profession. However, the point of hiring trained stunt…

Swimming Facilities Are Responsible for Keeping Customers Safe

Swimming Facilities Are Responsible for Keeping Customers Safe

Taking a swim is a great way to stay cool and keep in shape in the summer, but it’s easy to become wary of this pastime amid the many reports of fatal drowning. Here in Atlanta, the last few years have been especially rough on that front. In 2014, a 4-year-old girl drowned during a pool party at the Ansley Golf Club. A lifeguard was on duty, but apparently didn’t notice when the girl fell in. Just two years later, a 10-year-old boy drowned in the pool of the Westin Peachtree Plaza, at a birthday party for his friend. His death was made all the more sad and frustrating by the lack of information on how it happened. The Plaza’s representatives and the party’s chaperones…

May Is National Electrical Safety Month

May Is National Electrical Safety Month

This May is the Electrical Safety Foundation International’s (ESFI) National Electrical Safety Month. ESFI is a non-profit dedicated to improving electrical safety at home, in schools, and in the workplace. The annual National Electrical Safety Month campaign is an attempt to educate children and adults about electrical hazards and the best practices to ensure safety. Some of the ESFI’s activities include gathering data about safety and possible threats. The campaign for the month also includes media promotional materials for anyone who wants to share their commitment to electrical safety on social media or through other means. The theme for Electrical Safety Month 2018 is “Understanding the Code that Keeps Us Safe,” focusing on the National Electrical Code and how to apply it. If you or…