Facebook

Twitter

iTunes

RSS

HEAR THIS HOUR'S UPDATE

Entries in Centers for Disease Control (3)

Saturday
Apr282012

Helmets Save Lives During Tornadoes, Scientists Say

Image Credit: Stewart Family(NEW YORK) -- As families in Alabama come together to remember the nearly 250 people killed one year ago today in devastating tornadoes, authorities were begging residents to pay close attention to the story of 8-year-old Noah Stewart.

“He was caught up as high as a power pole … just being spun around and then he came down and hit the ground” said Noah’s mother, Lisa Stewart.

Noah is alive today because of a bicycle helmet his mother gave him to put on his head.

“It felt like I went head-first into the concrete. I think it actually just broke in pieces,” Noah Stewart told ABC News. “I think I just went straight down and just hit my head and it completely broke.”

Today, the Centers for Disease Control reports that many of those who were killed did exactly what they should. They ran to basements, bathrooms and other safe places. There was plenty of warning, but none of this was enough.

Scientists at the University of Alabama found that in one county they studied at least half of those killed died from head injuries that could have been prevented.

“If there is a severe weather alert, protect your head,” Russ Fine, an injury epidemiologist at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, told ABC News, “whether it’s a hard hat from a construction site, a football helmet, a motorcycle helmet [or] a bicycle helmet.”

In Joplin, Mo., it was a bicycle helmet that saved the life of Augie Gonzales. Of all things, it was a toilet that hit him in the head. Fortunately, he was uninjured.

“I know the helmet saved my son,” said his mother, Natalie Gonzales.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May192011

CDC Prepares for Zombie Apocalypse...Kind Of

Christopher Robbins/Digital Vision(WASHINGTON) -- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention -- a government agency -- hasn't outright predicted a zombie apocalypse, but rest assured, if one should occur, the CDC says it's prepared.

In a post that caught the attention of geeks and politicos alike, the CDC this week posted a guide, called "Preparedness 101: Zombie Apocalypse," to ensure public safety in the event of a zombie uprising.

"The rise of zombies in pop culture has given credence to the idea that a zombie apocalypse could happen," the CDC says in a blog post. "In such a scenario zombies would take over entire countries, roaming city streets eating anything living that got in their way.  The proliferation of this idea has led many people to wonder 'How do I prepare for a zombie apocalypse?'"

As you may have guessed, the post isn't all that serious (Editor’s note: We are not denying the possibility of a zombie apocalypse); it's merely intended to prepare the public for more practical emergencies, like hurricanes or wide-spread illness.

The page was developed to remind people to assemble emergency supply kits with items like water, food, and both prescription and non-prescription medication. This, they say, will "get you through the first couple of days before you can locate a zombie-free refugee camp," or, perhaps more realistically "in the event of a natural disaster, it will buy you some time until you are able to make your way to an evacuation shelter or utility lines are restored."

The agency also suggests that families map out an emergency plan. "This includes where you would go and who you would call if zombies started appearing outside your door step." But of course, "You can also implement this plan if there is a flood, earthquake, or other emergency."

[READ THE FULL POST ON THE CDC WEBSITE]

And don't worry. If zombies do take over, the CDC says it "would conduct an investigation much like any other disease outbreak."

No word on what they've got planned for Judgment Day.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
May112011

$41 Billion: Annual Cost of US Crash-Related Deaths

Hemera Technologies/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Fatalities resulting from auto accidents cost $41 billion in medical costs and lost wages each year, according to a report out Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The report, based on deaths in 2005, found that the highest costs -- in fact, half of the overall total -- came in just 10 states: California ($4.16 billion), Texas ($3.50 billion), Florida ($3.16 billion), Georgia ($1.55 billion), Pennsylvania ($1.52 billion), North Carolina ($1.50 billion), New York ($1.33 billion), Illinois ($1.32 billion), Ohio ($1.23 billion), and Tennessee ($1.15 billion).

"Deaths from motor vehicle crashes are preventable," said the CDC's Thomas Frieden. "Seat belts, graduated driver's license programs, child safety seats, and helmet use save lives and reduce health care costs."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio