Daily Archives: June 20, 2017

Michigan Officials Charged with Involuntary Manslaughter in Flint Water Crisis

Michigan’s attorney general said officials failed to act to stop the Flint water crisis, leading to at least one death.

By: Adolfo Flores, Source: Buzzfeed, Originally Published: 6.14.17

The head of Michigan’s health department and four other officials were charged Wednesday with involuntary manslaughter for their alleged failure to act in the Flint water crisis, which prosecutors say led to the death of an 85-year-old man who had Legionnaires’ disease.

Nick Lyon, director of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), was the highest-ranking official to be charged. The others include former Flint Emergency Manager Darnell Earley, former City of Flint Water Department Manager Howard Croft, the state Department of Environmental Quality Drinking Water’s chief, Liane Shekter-Smith, and Water Supervisor Stephen Busch. They all face up to 15 years in prison, as well as a $7,500 fine, if convicted.

“The health crisis in Flint has created a trust crisis for Michigan government, exposing a serious lack of confidence in leaders who accept responsibility and solve problems,” state Attorney General Bill Schuette said at a news conference.

 

Opioid Epidemic Leads to Increase in Trucking Accidents

By: Melanie J. VanOverloop, Source: The Legal Examiner, Originally Published: 6.19.17

Opioids are a class of highly addictive substances which are often prescribed for pain relief.  An individual taking an opioid can have slower reaction times, reduced coordination, blurred vision and drowsiness – all side effects that can impair a person’s ability to operate a vehicle safely. Currently, almost half of the nation’s truck drivers are over 50. Decades of sitting behind the wheel of a truck for extended periods of time can lead to back pain, joint pain, arthritis and many other medical conditions for which opioids are often prescribed. Although federal regulations prohibit drivers from using opioids and driving unless a doctor has advised them to do so, some drivers do not disclose their opioid use. The combination of opioids and the operation of a motor vehicle – particularly a commercial vehicle like an 18-wheeler – can be catastrophic.