September may have been National Preparedness Month, but here at the Illinois Poison Center (IPC) we work year round to encourage Illinoisans to be prepared for all types of emergencies that may occur in their area. For folks that live within a 10-mile radius of one of the state’s six nuclear power plants, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) recommends including potassium iodide (KI) tablets in their emergency preparedness kit along with their other supplies. Read more »
There is a definite chill coming to Illinois. On my nightly walk with the dogs, hats and gloves are now a necessity. Soon boots and thick coats will come out of hiding to add needed warmth when venturing outside.
Furnaces are beginning to kick on more frequently now. Every year, like clockwork, this is the time that calls to poison centers regarding carbon monoxide start to rise. Calls to the Illinois Poison Center in the October – December time period are usually about 50% higher than the June – September months. Read more »
Are you counting on a bolt of lightning in a can or another popular, highly advertised energy booster to get to get you through your Black Friday shopping frenzy this year? Be careful or the old adage “shop until you drop” may prove fateful. There seems to be no limit to the number of warnings about the dangers of energy drinks from the US Food and Drug Administration and other agencies interested in public safety.
Recently it was reported that the American and Vietnamese governments have taken on a massive $43 million environmental clean-up project in Vietnam. If you did not serve in the armed forces during the Vietnam War, you may not be familiar with Agent Orange.
Agent Orange is a tactical herbicide developed by the US Department of Defense that was used to remove trees and dense tropical vegetation in the region during the Vietnam War from 1962 to 1971. Read more »
In 2011, 49% of calls to the IPC involved kids age 5 and under. While that is a big chunk of our calls, that percentage has actually decreased over the past few years. Lots of poisoning exposures DO involve kids: children learn about their environment by picking things up and putting them in their mouth. They imitate adults, and of course they can’t read labels or fully understand the cause and effect of eating something potentially harmful. So why have poisoning exposures in this age group reported to the IPC drop dropped by 5-7% per year? Read more »