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September 13, 2011

30,000 Jettas Recalled in the U.S.

FDA Warns of Serious Risk with Recalled Medtronic Drug Pumps

Safety Regulators Probe Headlight Failures on Minivans

LA Firefighter Awarded $400,000 in Lawsuit

Suit: Employer Shows Bias Against Pregnancy

3,500 in W.Va. Enrolled in DuPont Monitoring Plan

Feds Add Teeth to Offshore Safety Rule

Texas Jurors' Stipend to Diminish

U.S. Targets Drug Executives

State Farm Move Could Mean Less Homeowner Coverage

 

 

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Announcements

 

2011 Reel Justice Fishing Tournament, Sep 30 - Oct 1 in Port Aransas

Join the TTLA Advocates for our first Annual Reel Justice Fishing Tournament, and see who gets bragging rights as TTLA's fishing champion! The fun starts Friday evening with a Welcome dinner, where you'll meet your guide and pick up your tournament materials. Saturday morning at first light, it's ON! Registration fee includes boat, guide, Welcome dinner on Friday, breakfast, lunch & snacks on Saturday, tournament t-shirt, and other goodies!  

 

Road Rules Dallas: A CRASH Course (Car Wrecks CLE) October 6, Dallas

TTLA's exceptional Car Wrecks program is coming to Dallas! Topics for this live program include opening with the reptile, paid/incurred, UM/UIM issues, trucking and more. Non-members welcome.REGISTER NOW online. Questions? Contact Rhonda High or call (512) 476-3852.  

 

Products

 

30,000 Jettas Recalled in the U.S.

Volkswagen has issued a recall of 2011 and 2012 Jetta sedans due to exhaust pipes that caused leg burns. The recall covers 30,294 cars. The company said "some of the cars came with stainless steel exhaust tips may extend beyond the length of the original factory-installed exhaust pipes." This increases the risk of unintentional contact and burns. The recall, which was instituted after a number of consumer complaints to the company, will begin in November.  Jonathan Welsh, WSJ Blogs  09/13/2011

Read Article: WSJ Blogs    

 

FDA Warns of Serious Risk with Recalled Medtronic Drug Pumps

The FDA are warning patients that drug pumps recalled by Medtronic may fail to deliver drugs used to treat chronic pain, spasms and other conditions. The FDA classified the action as a class-one recall Monday, meaning the defective devices could cause serious harm. The agency says the malfunction is caused by a film that forms on the battery. The recall affects SynchroMed II implantable pump models 8637-20 and 8637-40, distributed between 2004 and July 2011. As with most implantable device recalls, the manufacturer is not recommending patients have the pumps removed. Instead patients should contact their doctor if they experience symptoms are hear the device alarm.  Associated Press, The Washington Post  09/13/2011

Read Article: The Washington Post    

 

Safety Regulators Probe Headlight Failures on Minivans

Federal safety regulators have opened an investigation into Dodge and Chrysler minivans from the 2005 model year because the headlights can fail without warning. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said on its website that 622,817 Dodge Caravan and Chrysler Town and Country minivans could be affected by the problem. The agency says more than 1,500 owners have complained to Chrysler or the government. Two crashes and one minor injury were reported to Chrysler. In addition, 14,208 warranty claims that may be related to the problem have been reported by Chrysler.  Associated Press, The Washington Post  09/13/2011

Read Article: The Washington Post    

 

Laws/Cases

 

LA Firefighter Awarded $400,000 in Lawsuit

A former Los Angeles County firefighter has been awarded $400,000 in a lawsuit he filed against the county and department over a retaliatory firing. The lawsuit claims the plaintiff was retaliated against after testifying against another employee during a sexual harassment case. He claims he was threatened by supervisors and transferred to another station that was 65 miles away from his home.  Bill Hetherman, Contra Costa Times  09/13/2011

Read Article: Contra Costa Times    

 

Suit: Employer Shows Bias Against Pregnancy

A Vice President at Deutsche Bank has filed a lawsuit against the company claiming she she was discriminated against by the company after taking maternity leave. According to the lawsuit, upon her return, the company "directed bigger accounts to a male colleague, slashed her bonus" and tried to demote her. The lawsuit is seeking punitive and compensatory damages.  Jonathan Stempel, Reuters  09/12/2011

Read Article: Reuters    

 

3,500 in W.Va. Enrolled in DuPont Monitoring Plan

DuPont says some 3,500 West Virginians who believe long-term exposure to a former zinc smelter has increased their risk of illness are currently enrolled in a medical monitoring program set to begin Nov. 1. The 30-year program may help people who lived near the Spelter smelter in Harrison County to detect and treat disease early. The smelter in north-central West Virginia produced more than 4 billion pounds of slab zinc and 400 million pounds of zinc dust for use in rustproofing products, paint pigments and battery anodes. By 1971, a toxic waste pile stood 100 feet tall and covered nearly half of the 112 acres.  Associated Press, The Washington Post  09/13/2011

Read Article: The Washington Post    

 

Issues

 

Feds Add Teeth to Offshore Safety Rule

The government today moved to boost the safety of offshore drilling by adding teeth to one-year-old requirements that oil and gas companies systematically identify risks at every stage of their work. The proposed changes build on the workplace safety rule the agency imposed last October. Under the year-old rule, companies must identify risks at every stage of offshore exploration and then take steps to minimize those human errors and organizational hazards. That regulation for the first time forced companies operating in U.S. waters to establish safety and environmental management systems like those already required in the North Sea. Companies have until Nov. 15 to comply.  Jennifer A. Dlouhy , Houston Chronicle  09/13/2011

Read Article: Houston Chronicle    

 

Texas Jurors' Stipend to Diminish

Jury pay will be another casualty of state budget cuts this month. Trial jurors get $6 from Harris County for their first day of service. For each day served after that, they get $40 - $34 from the state and $6 from the county. The state budget passed earlier this year will see Texas' contribution drop from $34 to $28 per day on Sept. 28.  Mike Morris, Houston Chronicle  09/13/2011

Read Article: Houston Chronicle    

 

U.S. Targets Drug Executives

U.S. authorities are stepping up enforcement of a little-used law—the so-called "responsible corporate officer doctrine"—to hold executives personally and criminally responsible for corporate violations of U.S. food and drug laws. The development has triggered a new wave of worry among defense lawyers representing health-care executives. Congress authorized criminal sanctions against corporate officers in 1938 under the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. The Supreme Court has since interpreted the law to allow prosecutions without evidence that executives knew a crime was committed because of the potential for health-care and food products to cause death.  VANESSA O'CONNELL AND MICHAEL ROTHFELD , Wall Street Journal - $$ Subscription Required  09/13/2011

Read Article: Wall Street Journal - $$ Subscription Required($)    

 

Insurance

 

State Farm Move Could Mean Less Homeowner Coverage

State Farm is proposing changes to home insurance deductibles that consumer advocates warn would reduce the amount consumers could collect on claims. As part of a notice to TDI that it plans to hike homeowner rates an average 9.6% in October,and also said it plans to move all current customers to a minimum 1% deductible starting in December. That means deductibles would be charged as a percentage of the home's insured value rather than a flat dollar amount. For example, the owner of a house insured for $200,000 with a flat $1,000 deductible and a $10,000 claim would collect $9,000 from an insurer. With a 1% deductible, however, the homeowner would only recover $8,000 because the 1% deductible translates to $2,000. With a 5% deductible, the same homeowner would collect nothing from the insurance company.  Purva Patel, Houston Chronicle  09/13/2011

Read Article: Houston Chronicle    


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