This week in safety: The ABCs of handwashing

Consumer Reports News: May 01, 2009 05:09 PM

As the Handwasher-in-Chief said this week, it's a good idea to clean your hands thoroughly especially during a flu outbreak. That's not news to most parents and teachers. Washing your hands and those of the children you oversee is a good practice for lots of reasons and is the best way to avoid getting sick.

The Mayo Clinic recommends soaping up your hands and rubbing them together vigorously for 15 to 20 seconds. As many teachers tell their charges, that is about the length of time it takes to sing the entire Alphabet Song. For adults who prefer a more sophisticated ditty, NPR is hosting a vote for other 20-second songs or snippets to scrub by. In the lead so far is the bridge from Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" (bridge at min 3.06).

No matter what song you use, remember to lather up, scrub well, rinse off and dry your hands with a clean or disposable towel. (Alcohol-based hand sanitizers can be used in a pinch.) Let's get started: "A, B, C, D ..."

H1N1 (swine) flu updates
At Consumers Union we've been following the H1N1 flu situation closely on both our Health blog and in a special H1N1 Flu section of the Consumer Reports Health.org Web site. Check in for information on prevention, treatment and interviews with our doctors and other experts.

Other news
Explaining China's quality control problems
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In his new book, Poorly Made in China, Paul Midler attempts to explain why some Chinese-made products suffer from poor quality. Part of the problem, he says, is rooted in miscommunication and misunderstandings between American companies and the Chinese manufacturers they are buying from. Read more ...

Do you know where that berry came from?
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Food companies are under pressure to find ways to quickly trace the paths of tomatoes, melons, lettuce and other produce from farm to store after a series of food product recalls and salmonella outbreaks. It's a challenge. Read more ...

Most lawnmower accidents are caused by negligence and careless behavior
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Window blinds still pose hazard to kids
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The recent death of a Kingman 14-month-old has raised concerns among parents and other childcare providers about window blind cords. Read more ...

A free trampoline: the gift that keeps on giving
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The Outsider blogger writes. "I can’t imagine why anyone would intentionally get a trampoline for kids to play on. It might be safer to give them an arc welder—or a chainsaw." Read more ...

Dangers of backyard nets highlighted as girl is injured
MetroWest Daily News

After a heavy hockey net tipped over and injured a girl, emergency responders and the girl's father are reminding parents to be sure backyard sports goals, swing sets and other home play equipment is anchored down. Read more ...

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