News Around the World

Bar Offers Pool of Cherry Blossoms

The cherry blossom has been an important symbol in Japan. Because of this, the Japanese hold the cherry blossom trees in high regard. A bar in Tokyo (Sakura Chill Bar) now offers a ‘pool’ filled with 1.2 million imitation cherry blossom petals. You can get in with your friends and take pictures fully immersed in cherry blossom petals.

News Around the World

Husbands & Wives Disagree on How Much Money They Have

No wonder married couples argue so much about money: They can’t even agree on how much they have. And guess which partner is likely to have a more optimistic view of the family’s finances? That’s right., husbands are likely to provide significantly higher values for annual income and net worth, while wives are likely to report higher household debt. The typical older man in the study reported assets of about $4,700 more than his wife reported, while the typical older woman reported debt of about $500 higher than the figure given by her husband.

News Around the World

Wacky But True: Selfie Edition

Reece Park had a big night out in Australia (Launceston, Tasmania). Things got so out of hand that after he climbed into a taxi, the driver called police. Officers took Reese home and put him in bed. But before leaving the cops took the opportunity to record the moment with a selfie in case Reese couldn’t remember how he got home. They used his camera.

Lakeshore News, News Around the World

Teens, Young Adults Visit Emergency Rooms More than Others for Heat-Related Illnesses, New Data Review Finds

A new look at data from Minnesota and Wisconsin found that teens and adults 15 to 34 years old in both states are the most likely to visit the emergency department for heat-related illness. 

This finding was somewhat surprising as the majority of public health alerts during heat waves focus on the very young and the very old since they are at higher risk for death and longer hospitalizations. This work highlights that teens and younger adults, particularly those involved in athletics or working outdoors, also need to take steps to prevent heat-related illnesses.

Epidemiologists from Minnesota and Wisconsin joined forces to look at heat-related illness, such as heat exhaustion, heat cramps, and heat stroke, from 2006-2015 in both states. There were 7,537 heat-related illness emergency department cases in Minnesota or 14.2 heat-related emergency department cases per every 100,000 people, and 8,445 cases or 14.9 cases per every 100,000 people in Wisconsin.

Other findings include the following:

  • Men are about twice as likely to visit the emergency department for heat-related illness as women.

  • Counties with a higher heat index generally had more cases of heat-related illness.

  • Counties in rural areas had heat-related illness rates significantly higher than counties in more metropolitan areas.

A summary of the methodology, findings and limitations, and future directions can be found on our website.

“Over the past few years, our agencies started noticing more and more cases of heat-related illness among younger, working-age people,” said Tess Konen, an epidemiologist and project lead from Minnesota Department of Health. “We were interested in knowing more about who is impacted by extreme heat in our states.”

Minnesota and Wisconsin share similar climates, populations, and patterns of heat-related illness. “Given our similarities, we knew our project would have the biggest impact if we combined our data and worked together to assess heat-related illness trends and patterns,” said Paul Creswell, an epidemiologist and project lead from Wisconsin Department of Health Services.

Public health professionals at both agencies will be using the results from this project to improve their heat-related outreach efforts. “During hot summer months, we are still concerned about the very young and very old. But what we learned from this project is that we can do better to reach other populations who may not be aware of their risk,” said Konen.

As we head into summer months, both agencies are reminding Minnesotans and Wisconsinites to take steps to stay safe during extreme heat:

  • Stay in air conditioning. When possible, stay in air conditioning on hot days. If you don’t have air conditioning, head to libraries, malls, and other public spaces to keep cool.

  • Check on loved ones. Extreme heat can affect anyone of any age, including youth and adults. Be sure to check on older friends and neighbors who live alone and don’t have air conditioning.

  • Avoid the hottest part of the day. If you have to be outside, stick to the cooler morning and evening hours. Wear light, loose clothing and take frequent, air conditioned breaks.

  • Beware of hot cars. Never leave a person or a pet in a parked car, even for a short time. On an 80 degree day, the temperature inside a car can reach 100 degrees in less than 10 minutes.

  • Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water on hot days. Avoid alcohol and hot, heavy meals.

  • Stay informed. Watch your local weather forecasts so you can plan outdoor activities safely. Pay attention to any extreme heat alerts.

If you start feeling overheated, weak, dizzy, nauseated, or have muscle cramps, you could be experiencing heat illness. Move to air conditioning, drink water, get under a fan, and put on cool washcloths. If your symptoms worsen or don’t improve, go to the emergency room.

For more information, visit the Wisconsin Department of Health Services heat safety webpage and review heat-related illness data in our County Environmental Health Profiles.

Lakeshore News, News Around the World

AAA Study Reveals Key Deadly Behaviors for Teen Drivers as “100 Deadliest Days” Begin

Over the past five years, nearly 3,500 people have been killed in crashes involving teen drivers during the 100 Deadliest Days, the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day, when the number of crash fatalities involving a teen driver historically rise. New crash data from 2013-2017 reveals major factors contributing to fatal teen crashes during the summer driving period include:

  • Speeding (28 percent)
  • Drinking and driving (17 percent)
  • Distraction (9 percent)

“Crash data shows that teens are a vulnerable driver group with a higher probability of being involved in crashes,” said Dr. David Yang, Executive Director of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. “And while teens may make mistakes when first learning to drive, it is important to continue educating them about safety behind the wheel so they avoid the reckless behaviors that put themselves and others at risk on the road.”

AAA Foundation research found that nearly two-thirds of people injured or killed in a crash involving a teen driver are people other than the teen behind the wheel. Crashes for teen drivers increase significantly during the summer because teens are out of school and driving more. Over the past five years during the “100 Deadliest Days”:

  • An average of almost 700 people died each year in crashes involving teen drivers.
  • The average number of deaths from crashes involving teen drivers ages 15-18 was 17 percent higher per day compared to other days of the year.

Reckless behavior like drinking and driving, speeding and distraction are contributing to the alarming number of crash deaths involving teen drivers each summer.

Speeding

Speeding significantly increases the severity of a crash and is a growing problem among teen drivers. In the AAA Foundation’s latest Traffic Safety Culture Index, half (49.7 percent) of teen drivers reported speeding on a residential street in the past 30 days and nearly 40 percent say they sped on the freeway.

Drinking and Driving

Despite the fact that teens cannot legally consume alcohol, one in six teen drivers involved in fatal crashes during the summer tested positive for alcohol.

Distraction- Underreported Problem

More than half of teen drivers (52 percent) in the AAA Foundation’s latest Traffic Safety Culture Index report reading a text message or email while driving in the past 30 days and nearly 40 percent report sending a text or email. It is difficult for law enforcement to detect distraction following a crash, which has made distracted driving one of the most underreported traffic safety issues.

Additional AAA Foundation research using in-vehicle dash-cam videos of teen driver crashes found distraction was involved in 58 percent of teen crashes, approximately four times as many as federal estimates.

“Parents have plenty to be concerned about as their teen hits the road this summer,” said Nick Jarmusz, Midwest director of public affairs for AAA – The Auto Club Group. “Teens are making deadly mistakes on the road. Parents are the best line of defense to keep everyone safe behind the wheel.”

To keep roads safer this summer, AAA encourages parents to:

  • Talk with teens early and often about abstaining from dangerous behavior behind the wheel, such as speeding, impairment and distracted driving.
  • Teach by example and minimize risky behavior when driving.
  • Make a parent-teen driving agreement that sets family rules for teen drivers.
  • AAA members and insureds can utilize AAADrive™, a free feature within the AAA Mobile app that can help parents keep their new teen driver safer buy setting limits such as when they can drive, where they can drive and how fast they can drive. Download it by texting MOBILEAPP to 99513.

“Teens should also prepare for summer driving by practicing safety during every trip,” said Dr. Bill Van Tassel, AAA Manager of Driver Training Programs. “Storing your phone out of reach, minding the speed limit, and staying away from impairing substances like alcohol and marijuana will help prevent many crashes from ever occurring.”

TeenDriving.AAA.com has a variety of tools to help prepare parents and teens for the dangerous summer driving season. The online AAA StartSmart program also offers great resources for parents on how to become effective in-car coaches as well as advice on how to manage their teen’s overall driving privileges. Teens preparing for the responsibility of driving should enroll in a driver education program that teaches how to avoid driver distraction and other safety skills.

Lakeshore News, News Around the World

Electronic Patch to Keep You Cool

If you’re one of those people who have a tricky internal thermostat, technology may soon give you a hand, in the form of a high-tech patch.

Engineers at the University of California San Diego say their soft, flexible patch they’ve developed can cool you down if you’re too hot, and make you feel warm when the temperature drops.

With an eye on someday embedding the tech into “smart clothing”, and helping people and businesses save on utility bills, the researchers’ findings have been published in the journal Science Advances.

Unlike other devices currently on the market, this patch requires no water or fans — instead it uses varying flows of electricity to warm or cool a person down.

A prototype of the device was woven into an armband worn by a male subject. When the ambient temperature was changed from 71.6 degrees Fahrenheit all the way to nearly 97 degrees, it kept the wearer’s skin stable at a pre-set 89.6 degrees.

The engineers say regulating an individual’s temperature is far more efficient than having to raise or lower a building’s temperature.

Lakeshore News, News Around the World

Want to Buy a $47,000 Cooler for Your Next Picnic?

With Memorial Day close at hand, most Americans are thinking about packing up a couple of cold ones and hitting the beach or a barbecue — and what better way to stow your stuff than a $47,000 cooler from Rolls-Royce?

Technically, the luxury automaker calls it a Champagne Chest, but we suppose there’s no reason you can haul some Natty Light inside the machined aluminum, carbon fiber, and natural leather case.

The chest is packed with four hand-blown crystal champagne flutes, though the optional “caviar arrangement” comes with “two thermal caviar caissons, two blini caissons and a pair of Mother-of-Pearl spoons,” according to the accessory’s website.

For the lunchpail crowd, “caissons” are upscale Thermoses.

“The lid metamorphoses into a beautiful serving tray,” the site invites. “Two side hammocks automatically deploy with your preferred ensemble of caviar, canapés and champagne, kept beautifully chilled by thermal coolers. And four cotton Rolls-Royce napkins are tucked discreetly underneath.”

In short, the case is billed as, “The perfect accompaniment for your celebration, from terrace to superyacht,” though if you have the dough, feel free to use it anywhere you feel like it.

News Around the World

Wedding Crasher in Florida

A wedding crasher who invited himself to a wedding reception at the Grand Plaza Hotel on St. Pete Beach in St. Petersburg Florida, on Monday night was arrested after he cut into the bride and groom’s first dance, reports WFTS.

A photographer hired by the couple captured the entire incident.

Mark Saunderson, of Land O’ Lakes, was busting a move on the dance floor when staff and security attempted to detain him. He fled to the 11th floor of the hotel. Saunderson was eventually located and taken to an elevator where he spoke to a deputy.

The deputy said the 37-year-old told him that he was from Ohio and gave him his phone number in place of his social security. According to the arrest report, Saunderson was slurring his words, had bloodshot eyes and was unsteady on his feet.

Saunderson was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office.

The newlyweds say they are not mad at Saunderson, and that they find the whole thing funny. They added that the expressions captured on their faces in the photos were more because they were shocked than angry.

#nascar, News Around the World

Five Legends Named to 2020 NASCAR Hall Of Fame Class

NASCAR announced today the inductees who will comprise the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2020. The five-person group – the 11th since the inception of the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2010 – consists of Buddy Baker, Joe Gibbs, Bobby Labonte, Tony Stewart and Waddell Wilson. In addition, NASCAR announced that Edsel Ford II earned the 2020 Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR. The distinguished group will be honored during the NASCAR Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Jan. 31, 2020.

The NASCAR Hall of Fame Voting Panel met today in a closed session at the Charlotte Convention Center to debate and vote upon the 20 nominees for the induction class of 2020 and the five nominees for the Landmark Award.

The Class of 2020 was determined by votes cast by the Voting Panel, including representatives from NASCAR, the NASCAR Hall of Fame, track owners from major facilities and historic short tracks, media members, manufacturer representatives, competitors (drivers, owners, crew chiefs), recognized industry leaders, a nationwide fan vote conducted through NASCAR.com and, for the sixth year, the reigning Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion (Joey Logano). In all, 57 votes were cast, with two additional Voting Panel members recused from voting as potential nominees for induction (Ricky Rudd and Waddell Wilson). The accounting firm of EY presided over the tabulation of the votes.

Voting was as follows: Tony Stewart (88%), Joe Gibbs (72%), Waddell Wilson (72%), Buddy Baker (70%) and Bobby Labonte (67%).

The next top vote-getters were Mike Stefanik, Ray Fox and Hershel McGriff.

Results for the NASCAR.com Fan Vote, in alphabetical order, were Buddy Baker, Neil Bonnett, Harry Gant, Bobby Labonte and Tony Stewart.

The five inductees came from a group of 20 nominees that included, in addition to the five inductees chosen: Sam Ard, Neil Bonnett, Red Farmer, Ray Fox, Harry Gant, John Holman, Harry Hyde, Hershel McGriff, Ralph Moody, Marvin Panch, Jim Paschal, Larry Phillips, Ricky Rudd, Mike Stefanik and Red Vogt.

Nominees for the Landmark Award included Edsel Ford II, Alvin Hawkins, Mike Helton, Dr. Joseph Mattioli and Ralph Seagraves.

The Class of 2020 Induction Weekend is set for Thursday, Jan. 30, 2020, through Saturday, Feb. 1, 2020, at the NASCAR Hall of Fame and Charlotte Convention Center in Charlotte, North Carolina. The official Induction Ceremony will take place on Friday, Jan. 31, 2020. The Class of 2020 marks the 11th class and a total of 55 legends inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

Tickets to Induction Ceremony events begin at $75 per person (plus tax and applicable service fees). Tickets go on sale on Saturday, July 6, 2019, at 10 a.m. ET. Special pre-sales will be available to NASCAR Hall of Fame members Tuesday, June 25 through Friday, July 5. For additional details about the Class of 2020 Induction Weekend events and to learn about becoming a NASCAR Hall of Fame member, visit nascarhall.com. 

Class of 2020 Inductees:

Buddy Baker

At six feet, six inches tall, Buddy Baker was often called the “Gentle Giant,” a nod to her personable nature during a 33-year career. In 1980, the Charlotte, North Carolina, native won the Daytona 500 with an average race speed of 177.602 mph – a track record that still stands. That same year, Baker became the first driver to eclipse the 200-mph mark on a closed course while testing at Talladega Superspeedway. He won 19 races in the Cup series, including a victory in the 1970 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway where he lapped the rest of the field. He also won back-to-back Coca-Cola 600s at Charlotte in 1972-73. After retiring in 1992, Baker made a successful transition to the television booth as a commentator for The Nashville Network and CBS, and later as a radio co-host on Late Shift and Tradin’ Paint for SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. 

Joe Gibbs

Joe Gibbs has won throughout his entire life. The three-time Super Bowl champion football coach started Joe Gibbs Racing in 1992 and has led the organization to four Cup Series championships and five Xfinity Series titles. Known as a master motivator, Gibbs’ 164 Cup Series owner wins (through May 22, 2019) rank third all-time. They include three Daytona 500 victories and five Brickyard 400 wins. His Cup Series titles have come with three different drivers: Bobby Labonte (2000), Tony Stewart (2002, ’05) and Kyle Busch (2015). Referred to in NASCAR circles has simply “Coach,” Gibbs was enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1996.

Bobby Labonte

The ultimate grinder, Bobby Labonte raced any car he could get behind the wheel of before he got his first break as a full-time Cup Series driver at 28 years old in 1993. His persistence paid off with a career highlighted by 21 trips to Victory Lane and the 2000 Cup Series title. A success in all three of NASCAR’s national series, Labonte was the first of four drivers to win both a Cup and Xfinity Series championship. He is also one of 27 drivers to win a race in all three national series. The Texan showed up on the biggest stages throughout his 2000 Cup championship season, earning two of his four wins in the Brickyard 400 and Southern 500. 

Tony Stewart

Known as “The People’s Champion” for his blue-collar, hard-nosed style of competition, Stewart immediately showed that he would be a force to be reckoned with in NASCAR – earning three victories in his Rookie of the Year season. The titles soon followed. Stewart won his first Cup championship in 2002 driving for Joe Gibbs Racing and answered that quickly in 2005. His versatility was on display throughout his 17-year NASCAR career. He tallied 49 wins in the Cup Series – winning on every style of track. He won the prestigious Brickyard 400 at his beloved, home-state Indianapolis Motor Speedway twice. In 2009, Stewart became a team owner, partnering with Gene Haas. He won 16 times as a driver/owner including one of the most memorable championship pursuits in history. In 2011, he won five of the 10 Playoff races – including the season finale – to claim his third title by virtue of a tiebreaker over Carl Edwards.

Waddell Wilson

A dual threat as an engine builder and crew chief, Waddell Wilson powered and guided cars to some of the biggest victories in NASCAR history. As an engine builder, he supplied the power that helped David Pearson (1968, ’69) and Benny Parsons (1973) to Cup Series titles. Overall, Wilson’s engines helped some of the greatest drivers to ever wheel a car – including NASCAR Hall of Famers Pearson, Fireball Roberts, Bobby Allison, Cale Yarborough and Darrell Waltrip – to 109 wins and 123 poles. He originally gained acclaim for building the engine Roberts used to win the 1963 Southern 500. Wilson guided three cars to Victory Lane in the Daytona 500 as a crew chief, winning The Great American Race with Buddy Baker (1980) and Cale Yarborough (1983-84). The famed “Grey Ghost” he assembled for Buddy Baker still holds the Daytona 500 record with an average speed of 177.602 MPH.