Submitted by: Chris Tomkins
Moving house is a huge affair. Whether you’ve got only a few bits and pieces to pack up or need to relocate all the family heirlooms, it’s sure to be a tiring task. Making sure nothing gets broken comes down to ensuring you’ve got things completely protected, and this doesn’t only apply to the more fragile parts. Learn how to keep your precious goods safe from harm by observing proper packing methods.
When you get ready to move to a new home or apartment, you can ensure that unexpected troubles will crop up. Avoiding the all too common inclination to just stuff everything into whichever crate or box it will fit into is a good way to be ready for the changes your plan will need to accommodate in order to complete a successful move. When you get tired from long days of lifting and rearranging, the last thing you want is for a pricey vase or computer to get broken due to a sudden drop or shift, so organizing things with clear labels and proper padding is essential.
Feed and Fodder.
Since you’re moving the things you need in order to survive, make sure that the ones you use on a regular basis are easily accessible. This means that the essentials, like toiletries and food, must be in containers that are properly sealed and marked so that your dry goods don’t end up rotting.
Generally, things that need refrigeration should either be moved first, or absolutely last. If you’re moving things on your own, and are more likely to stay in the new abode whilst doing so, bring the things you’ll need to make the kids dinner. If a moving service is going to ship all your baggage and you’ll just follow behind after, you may as well hold on to what you’re going to eat to avoid expensive restaurant tabs.
Keeping Everything Safe.
If you’ve got a moving company or friends to help you transfer your life somewhere else, then take advantage of their help to the fullest extent. Let them help you move the things you can’t take care of on your own, but remember, you’re still responsible for figuring out what has to go where.
Fragile items need proper padding, so old newspapers are great to keep on hand for wrapping. Blankets and towels you won’t be using along the way can be handy as well, but run the risk of being torn, so don’t use your favourite ones. Glass and ceramics are not made to support weight and although padding can help, marking them “FRAGILE!” so they don’t get placed on the bottom of a huge stack is essential. For the most lightweight possessions, sturdy-walled rubberised containers are perfect. Furniture needs to be protected from scratches and dents, so it’s wise to make sure you or your movers isolate it from other things with thick barriers. Above all, anything you put into a box ought to be properly marked so that you know what’s inside and how it must be handled.
About the Author: Find out more information about packing correctly and about
Sunday, February 17, 2008
In a press release today, California-based Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Co. indicated that it has voluntarily recalled just over 143 million pounds (65 million kilograms) of raw and frozen beef products, which is considered to be the largest single recall of beef products in U.S. history. The move follows an investigation by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) into allegations of animal cruelty and mishandling of cattle destined for the human food chain.
The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) had determined that beef products produced by the Chino, California company were unfit for human consumption as the cattle had not received “complete and proper inspection.”
The recall has been designated as Class II, which the USDA describes as “a health hazard situation where there is a remote probability of adverse health consequences from the use of the product.”
On Friday, Secretary of Agriculture Ed Schafer indicated that charges had been laid against employees of the plant alleged to have taken part in the mistreatment of cattle. “Today [Friday], the San Bernardino District Attorney filed felony animal cruelty charges against two employees who were terminated by Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Company,” said Schafer. “It is regrettable that these animals were mistreated and I am encouraged and supportive of these actions by the San Bernardino District Attorney in response to this mistreatment.”
The USDA learned of the possible inhumane handling of non-ambulatory (disabled) cattle at the packing plant on January 30 and has since suspended activities at the plant. “We continue to conduct a thorough investigation into whether any violations of food safety or additional humane handling regulations have occurred,” said Secretary Schafer in a press release. “On February 8, our Office of the Inspector General took the lead on the investigation. At that time, USDA extended the administrative hold on Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Company products for the National School Lunch Program, the Emergency Food Assistance Program and the Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations while the investigation continues,” said Schafer.
The FSIS reported that Hallmark/Westland had not contacted the FSIS public health veterinarian, as required, when cattle became ill or disabled after undergoing ante-mortem (slaughter) inspection, putting the company out of compliance with FSIS regulations. “Because the cattle did not receive complete and proper inspection FSIS has determined them to be unfit for human food and the company is conducting a recall,” explained Secretary Schafer.
The cruelty charges stem from an undercover video that reportedly showed sick cattle being moved by crews using forklifts.
“Words cannot accurately express how shocked and horrified I was at the depictions contained on the video that was taken by an individual who worked at our facility from October 3 thru November 14, 2007,” said Steve Mendell, President, Westland Meat Co. and Hallmark Meat Packing. “We have taken swift action regarding the two employees identified on the video and have already implemented aggressive measures to ensure all employees follow our humane handling policies and procedures. We are also cooperating with the USDA investigators on the allegations of inhumane handling treatment which is a serious breech of our company’s policies and training.”
The USDA stressed that it is “extremely unlikely” that the cattle involved were at risk for Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) or mad-cow disease due to the employment of multiple safeguards. The USDA felt the recall was required, however, as the plant had allegedly violated USDA regulations.
The recall involves raw and frozen beef products produced on various dates from February 1, 2006 to February 2, 2008. For further information about the recall, consumers, media, and distributors are encouraged to contact Hallmark/Westland’s Plant Manager Stan Mendell or Food Safety Consultant Steve Sayer at (909) 590-3340 or the FSIS website, www.fsis.usda.gov.
Friday, April 8, 2011
Australian Health Minister Nicola Roxon has announced plans to introduce legislation requiring cigarette packaging to be plain, and unbranded. The opposition coalition may oppose this move, and will examine the detail of the legislation before deciding.
“We do support sensible measures that are proven to lead to reduced levels of smoking but we want to wait and see the full legislation, and what evidence they are relying on that plain packaging does reduce smoking rates,” stated a spokesman for opposition leader Tony Abbott.
Intended to decrease the number of Australians smoking, the new packaging is to be olive in colour with no logos or branding, and larger health warnings similar to those currently embossed on packaging.
“The new packs have been designed to have the lowest appeal to smokers and to make clear the terrible effects that smoking can have on your health,” said Roxon in an official statement.
Cigarette conglomerate British American Tobacco Australia insists the proposed legislation to require plain package cigarettes is an infringement of international trademark and intellectual property laws that could cost Australian taxpayers millions in legal fees alone.
If the legislation passes the new law would begin to be phased in from January next year. With the new measures Australia will lead the world on tobacco control; several other countries, including New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and Canada, are reportedly watching the situation in Australia before implementing similar legislation.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
United States President Barack Obama has signed a US$787 billion stimulus package, entitled the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009, into law on Tuesday at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science in Denver, Colorado. He called the bill “the most sweeping recovery package in our history” at a signing ceremony.
“I don’t want to pretend that today marks the end of our economic problems, nor does it constitute all of what we’re going to have to do to turn our economy around,” Obama said at the ceremony, “but today does mark the beginning of the end — the beginning of what we need to do to create jobs for Americans scrambling in the wake of layoffs.
“The beginning of what we need to do to provide relief from families worried they won’t be able to pay next month’s bills. The beginning of the first steps to set our economy on a firmer foundation, paving the way to long-term growth and prosperity.”
Vice President Joe Biden praised the president on his work getting the bill passed. “Less than a month into his presidency, the president is about to sign into law what is, I believe, a landmark achievement,” he said. “Because of what he did America can take a first very strong step leading us out of this very difficult road to recovery we find ourselves with. So, on behalf of our country and its people, Mr President, let me presume to say: thank you, we owe you a great deal.”
According to Obama, the package is intended to save or create up to three and a half million jobs, and increase rebuilding infrastructure and consumer spending. 34% of the package is devoted to tax cuts equalling $286 billion, and a further $120 billion will be used to fund infrastructure projects, such as road-building and transportation. 64% of the package will be allocated for money for social programs and spending.
Most Republican lawmakers opposed the bill when it was voted upon in the Senate and the House last week. The House passed the bill without any Republican support, and only three Republicans voted for it in the Senate.
“Our nation is in recession, and responsible action is required to help our economy protect and create jobs, this isn’t it,” said John Boehner, the House Republican minority leader. “The flawed bill the President will sign today is a missed opportunity, one for which our children and grandchildren will pay a hefty price.”
Republican National Committee chairman Michael S. Steele said he was disappointed by what he thought was the president’s lack of a bipartisan approach in passing the bill: “In these difficult economic times, it is imperative that Republicans and Democrats work together to create new jobs and grow the economy. Instead, Congressional Democrats worked behind closed doors to write legislation that will fall short of creating the promised new jobs, but will guarantee a larger debt burden on our children and grandchildren.”
US stock markets were lower today, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average losing 3.29% or 258.62 points at the end of the day to a level of 7,591.79.
Thursday, May 26, 2011
On Friday evening, an explosion in Chengdu, China caused partial shutdown of a facility operated by Foxconn, one of the world’s biggest electronics manufacturers and a major supplier to companies like Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Sony, Apple, Motorola and Nokia. Initial investigations now suggest the explosion was caused by poor ventilation, which lead to high concentrations of combustible dust.
The blast happened at 7:18PM, around the time workers change shifts. A fire followed. Emergency services had control by 7:30PM. At least three people were killed, at least fifteen injured. Foxconn halted production to investigate, saying “All operations at the affected workshop remain suspended and production at all other workshops that carry out similar processing functions have also been halted pending the results of the investigation. All other production operations in our facilities in China continue operating normally.”
On Monday, city officials gave the cause as combustible dust in the air at a polishing workshop. Hong Kong-based labor rights group Students & Scholars Against Corporate Misbehavior said they reported aluminium dust problems in March when they reviewed working conditions at Foxconn. After the explosion, they commented that workers were complaining “the ventilation of the department is poor. Workers polish the iPad cases to make them shiny. In the process, there is lots of aluminum (aluminium) dust floating in the air. Workers always breathe in aluminum dust even though they put on masks. When workers take off their cotton gloves, their hands are covered with aluminum dust.”
Foxconn responded by saying the group was trying to “capitalize on the tragic accident” and misrepresented “Foxconn’s commitment to the health and safety of our employees.”
Foxconn is responsible for making iPads and iPhones for Apple. Research group IHS iSuppli said the explosion may cause loss of production of 500,000 iPads during this quarter of the year. They said there is a larger facility in Shenzhen, but it cannot cope with re-compensating the possible loss.
Monday, May 24, 2010
The black boxes from an Air India flight that crashed into a valley of near the southern Indian city of Mangalore Saturday, killing 158 of the 166 onboard, have been found by investigators. The flight data recorder was recovered late yesterday and the cockpit voice recorder was located today.
At the end of Sunday, 146 of the 158 bodies have been identified, and all have been recovered.
According to reports, the plane touched down at Mangalore’s Bajpe airport, overshooting the touchdown point by several thousand feet; one tire did not hit the runway at all. Sudden braking occured, the airliner’s wings hit a neighboring cliff, and the plane careened into a heavily forested ravine where it burst into flames. “The plane veered off toward some trees on the side and then the cabin filled with smoke,” said survivor Umer Farooq, “I got caught in some cables but managed to scramble out.” “I didn’t think of anything at the time. All I knew was that I had to get out and get far away from the plane. The fire was spreading fast. Behind me I could feel other people jumping out but I didn’t turn back to look,” said survivor Koolikkunnu Krishnan.
The black boxes record communication data, technical information such as speed, altitude, etc., as well as conversation in the airplane cockpit, which could help investigators determine why the jet crashed. “The black box has been recovered from the crash site. It is vital in finding information about key details like the last moments of the flight and whether there was any error from the pilot’s side. The box will be brought to the accident lab of the Director General of Civil Aviation in the national capital where it will be opened and to find out what exactly went wrong,” reported investigators. They did not clarify which box they were refering to, but both have been recovered.
The Air India Express Boeing 737-800, which had departed from Dubai of the United Arab Emirates, was bound for Mangalore in the southern Indian state of Karnataka. The Bajpe airport has a “tabletop” runway which means it is set atop a hill surrounded by a deep gorge. The airport, which was constructed in 2006, has seen over 32,000 successful landings since opening. After visiting the eight survivors, Arvind Jadhav, chairman of Air India said, “My heart goes out to those who died and who lost friends and relatives.”
The recording of technical data such as airspeed, altitude, control inputs etc is not handled by the cockpit voice recorder, as suggested in this article, but is in fact handled by the flight data recorder.
This article uses the term ‘black box’ for the cockpit voice recorder, a device which records all the sounds in the cockpit. However, the flight data recorder is also often referred to as a black box.
Monday, August 2, 2010
Investigators have found the black box of an Airblue flight that crashed into the Margalla Hills of Pakistan’s capital city on Wednesday. The flight data recorder was also recovered Saturday morning. Airblue Flight 202 departed from Karachi, Pakistan, and was bound for the capital Islamabad when it crashed into the Margalla Hills due to bad weather conditions. All 152 people aboard, including the 6 crewmembers, were killed.
Junaid Amin, the head of Pakistan’s Civil Aviation Authority, told CNN that the recorders will be sent to either Germany or France, which have the necessary resources to analyze the data. Such an investigation could take months to complete, however.
The black box records communication data and technical information such as speed and altitude, as well as conversations in the airplane cockpit. It could thus help investigators determine why the plane crashed.
Friday, March 28, 2008
The United States Army has suspended its contract with a company that delivered old and corroding ammunition from China for use by Afghan army and police forces in a way that violated the contract terms.
The ammunition was supplied by the Miami-based AEY Inc., a company run by a 22-year old named Efrain Diveroli. The nearly US$300 million contract stated that bullets were coming from Hungary, but were actually decades-old, damaged and corroded bullets from China.
Officials from the Army Legal Services Agency notified Diveroli, via a letter, that his company is suspended from future contracting with any U.S. government agency. The letter came as part of an Army investigation since November regarding violation of the contract.
According to the New York Times, Diveroli signed papers back on November 25, 2007 certifying that 28 pallets of ammunition for Afghanistan had been manufactured by MFS 2000, a Hungarian company, according to a memo written by investigators.
AEY violated the contract by breaking two clauses, one stating that the ammunition could not be acquired directly or indirectly from the People’s Republic of China, which is a violation of American law. The other clause specified that it must be packaged to comply with best commercial practices for international shipment.
According to the Times, says the ammunition arrived in decomposing cardboard boxes which contained ammunition dating as far back as 1966. However, Army officials believe some ammunition even dates back further to 1962.
The Army had contracted with AEY in January 2007 to supply various types of nonstandard ammunition for use by the Afghan National Army and Afghan National Police, an Army official said on background. The company was required to purchase the ammunition and deliver it to Kabul International Airport in Afghanistan. AEY was recently awarded a delivery order amount of $48,717,553 on March 17, 2007 as part of the $298,004,398 contract.
Also according to the Times, when purchasing the ammunition, AEY worked with middlemen and a shell company which has been placed on federal list of entities suspected of illegal arms trafficking. Also, the Times reported that, Diveroli was secretly recorded in conversation that suggested corruption on his company’s purchase of 100 million aging rounds from Albania.
Bryan Whitman, The Pentagon’s spokesperson told reporters that suspension of the contract was due to the violation of the origin of the ammunition and the packaging of the ammunition, not the safety and performance.
“Safety and performance has not apparently been a factor, according to our folks in Afghanistan. They have had no safety incidents reported and no reports of any ammunition that has malfunctioned associated with this particular contract,” Whitman told the press.
He also denied that the issue happened because the Army awarded the contract to the lowest bidder and that he was not aware of AEY’s qualifications to fulfill the contract.
“As the United States government does business, they are obviously always trying to ensure they get the best value,” he said. “But that does not mean that, in achieving the best value for the taxpayer, that we will accept something that is below standard for what it is we are purchasing, either.”
According to an Army official, the suspension of the contract will not have an impact on Afghanistan operations and other contractors are expressing interest into entering into a contract. “Besides, there’s no shortage of ammunition already in Afghanistan. This will have no impact,” he said.
Michael Diveroli, Efrain’s father, who originally founded AEY as a small printing business, said of his son’s career choice to CBS’ Miami affiliate, WFOR, “I would prefer he became a nice Jewish doctor or lawyer rather than an arms dealer. He’s never asked for my approval on the company. He doesn’t always take my advice, I don’t influence him. As a father of a boy genius he’s hard to control.”
Angelo Diveroli, Efrain’s grandfather said the young man frequently accompanied him to gun shows when he was younger and became an expert at weapons.
A friend of Diveroli said to WFOR, “The government came here and checked him out and gave him the contract. How do you give someone, a 21 year old kid a contract like that?”
The United States Army Criminal Investigation Command is continuing their investigation, according to officials.
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
A startled jogger asked construction workers for help after spotting a coyote in downtown Sarnia and hearing it bark. Sarnia police responded to the 911 call at Centennial Park in southern Ontario, Canada and surrounded the coyote.
It was then that it was discovered that the coyote was a cardboard cutout of a coyote placed in the park to ward off Canada geese. Police confiscated the coyote following the incident.
City officials installed the cardboard coyote last summer, and hope to erect them this summer as well.
“They do look pretty real. We don’t want to embarrass anyone, the police or the jogger. It’s an easy mistake to make. Maybe they look too real” said Terry McCallum, Sarnia’s director of community services, “We just figured vandals took them. You can’t put up any really fancy signs in the park because they usually disappear.”
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
A record number of complaints, over 600, against the New Zealand restaurant chain Hell Pizza for its advertising campaign using condoms delivered via letterbox have been upheld by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA). Family First “welcomes heavenly decision from ASA on Hells Pizza.”
Hell Pizza delivered sealed foil condoms in a cardboard box to households nationwide. On the outside of the box were the words: “Our pizza for meat lovers!” and the restaurant logo. The inside of the box included the condom and explicit instructions on how to use it. Hell Pizza delivered 70,000 condoms to households. An additional 100,000 were distributed to health and community groups who the chain said were “very supportive.”
Bob McCoskrie, director of Family First, said: “This is a victory for the protection of families from grubby advertising by companies like Hell’s Pizza, and is also a message to other companies who cross the line of what is decent and acceptable to our community. This is a pizza delivery company taking the moral high ground on sex education and telling parents how to give sex education to their kids, implying that all parents have failed at this, and kids as young as five should be exposed to this type of material.”
S. Nicholas filed a formal complaint and said in the complaint:” Any child can open the box take out these condoms and play with them. These are contraceptive devices, not playthings. The package also gave full instructions ‘how to use the condom’ in case some young person wanted to ‘experiment’! It shows lack of taste and is irresponsible.”
Other complainants said that it is inappropriate to promote food with a condom, the text “meat lovers” was offensive, that it undermined family values, and removed the right for families to teach sex education to their children. Condom use instructions that came with the advertising campaign were unnecessary and unacceptable and that there are health and safety issues if the condom broke during delivery.
The ASA said that three code of ethic rules were broken. They were basic principle 4, advertisements should follow a sense of social responsibility to both the consumers and society; rule 4, advertisements should not contain anything generally offensive and rule 5, advertisements should not contain anything that would cause serious widespread offence.
The agency Cinderella, acting on behalf of Hell Pizza, said that they “most certainly did approach this campaign with a due sense of social responsibility to consumers and society.”
Cinderella said: “From the very beginning, the company’s marketing activities were unconventional and memorable… HELL has built a successful brand by utilizing a limited marketing budget in ways that sought to grab attention and secure significant additional media coverage that would never have been able to be sustained using conventional, paid-for, advertising techniques.”
“LUST and sex are, in our experience, often found not far apart. One generally follows the other. And enjoying great food either before or after is also not such a stretch.”
Replying to the instructions that have to be printed, Cinderella said: “The terms are not really sexually arousing and the suggestion made by one hysterical complainant that they could then go and act out the instructions on the next door child is just not plausible and probably not even physically possible. It borders on insane to believe that this is a credible risk. …there has not been an explosion of sexual assault of children after being exposed to government health warnings.”
The ASA then considered all information given to them by both complainants and the advertiser.
The ASA agreed that the advertisements were in breach of basic principle 4 because: “Unsolicited, unaddressed delivery of a condom to letterboxes to promote a food brand did not meet [the basic principle 4] standard.” The standard “required all advertising to be prepared with a due sense of social responsibility to consumers and society.”
The ASA then reviewed whether or not the advertisement programme had breached rule 4 and rule 5. “The method of distribution was a key factor in considering whether or not the promotion had breached the Rules, taking into account the random context, medium, audience and product. The majority of the Board noted that it was difficult to target specific groups or ages using unaddressed letterbox distribution. In addition, it was concerned that such a method of distribution allowed any member of a household access to the advertising.” The majority of the ASA board did not find the instructions offensive but did agree that it would cause widespread offense. The advertisement programme is in breach of rule 4 and rule 5.
Some of the ASA board said: “…While the promotion had caused offence to some, this was offset by the possibility that the promotion had reached an audience that may not access the safe sex message via other media.”
The ASA decided to uphold the complaints, “complaints were unanimously upheld.”
“Our message to Hell’s Pizza is simple – stay out of the bedroom and get back into the kitchen,” Mr McCoskrie said.