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Chemical Suicide Dangers for First Responders

TASA ID: 18027

Chemical suicides are defined as “self inflicted death by mixing various chemicals designed to release toxic fumes in an enclosed space.”  This type of incident is also referred to as a “Detergent Suicide.”  It is “advertised as a quick and painless way to end one’s life.

This technique that is credited with starting in Japan and has gained popularity in the US thru instructions posted on the internet.  It is estimated that 500 Japanese men, women and children took their lives in the first half of 2008. There were a total of 208 persons that committed chemical suicide in a three-month period alone. They did so by following instructions posted on various Japanese websites that describe how to mix bath sulfur (bath salts) with a toilet bowl cleaner to create a poisonous gas (H2S). One site goes so far as to include an application to help calculate the portions needed of each ingredient in order to correctly fill a rooms volume with the deadly gas. It also has a downloadable PDF consisting of a ready-made warning sign to alert neighbors and emergency workers to the deadly hazard.


Restaurant and Hotel Safety:

Keys to Preventing and Managing Accidents and Incidents

TASA ID: 2534

The pressure to run a successful hospitality operation is greater than ever.  Between rising labor, food and rent costs and an intensely competitive marketplace, owners are finding it tougher to reach a profitable bottom line.  Now add to this the fact that the industry is a popular target in the legal arena with wage, discrimination, harassment and accident lawsuits which can often add up to significant expense for the operator.  For owners to successfully manage this difficult environment, they must operate at a very high and professional level and become proactive in addressing the threats to their business.  In terms of preventing and managing accidents, this means developing and implementing a system of safeguards that minimize exposure. This article will focus on accidents and incidents due to slips and falls, cuts and burns and foreign objects found in food.  The following are keys to creating that system:

FRAUD… I THOUGHT IT COULDN’T HAPPEN TO ME!

TASA ID: 408

Recently, I became intrigued with an advertisement on television for a product / service which appeared new.  It concerns a mobile telephone service which would cut my current service plan by about 50% … saving about $1,500 a year.  The advertisement indicates that a subscriber could use their current cell phone, merely removing the sim card and inserting the new one from this new carrier.  Although the new carrier does not have their own cell towers or cell facilities, it has contracted, according to the ad, to ‘bounce’ off two other very major cell carriers, depending upon the location of the call being made and the receiver of the call. 

Fitness Facility Operations

A Forensic Perspective

TASA ID: 16839

This article was recently published in the Int. J. Forensic Engineering, Vol. 2, No. 4, pp.286–292. Republished with permission.

Abstract: Fitness facilities provide a number of services to the public. Those services encompass how to train and create an overall healthy being. There are national standards and guidelines that fitness facilities must follow in order to keep their members safe. Some issues that large and small fitness facilities
have in common are the lack of knowledge regarding safe practices in the fitness industry. The purpose of this paper is to discuss safe operating procedures and establish an understanding of the industry standards and guidelines in an effort to decrease the incidence of injury or death. The authors will review the standard of care in fitness facility operations from a forensic perspective. This paper will also address frequent contributions to injuries in fitness facilities and provide recommendations regarding implementing safe
practices.

Download the PDF below to read more. 

100% Defense Verdict in Forklift Case

Reviewed by a Mechanical Engineering Expert Witness

TASA ID: 7934

About 10:30 am on the morning of 26 October 2007, Jose Avalos was delivering slabs of granite to a local installer.  The countertops were being loaned to the installer to be displayed at an open house barbeque for customers that was to take place later that day.  Mr. Avalos brought two A frames and between four and eight slabs of granite on a 20' flatbed gooseneck trailer.
 
Upon arrival, two of the installers employees proceeded to unload the truck.  One of them drove a Hyster forklift that had a custom boom attached to the forks and had a gravity clamp (Abaco Lifter) that hung down from the end of the boom.  The lifter was at the end of the boom. The setup is shown below:

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