Questions tagged [safety]

The balance of benefit versus harm of an activity, device, technology or substance.

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Is it true that whole flaxseed can last for six months past the written expiration date on the package? [closed]

In this page CAN FLAXSEED GO BAD? mentions Flaxseed can go bad, and its shelf life depends upon how it’s processed and stored. The more processed flaxseed is, the more likely it is to spoil. (...
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Are you more likely to wake to a noise which is “relevant” to you?

Here How Noise Affects Your Sleep, While you sleep, your brain continues to register and process sounds on a basic level. Noise can jostle your slumber—causing you to wake, move, shift between ...
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Japanese airlines and allegedly poor historic safety record

Background I have heard a claim that Japanese airlines used to have a poor safety record. Allegedly, this was ascribed to a strong emphasis on teacher - master relationship that made it difficult for ...
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Has a virus ever escaped a high-level virus lab?

As somewhat unclearly related in the Daily Mail: Dr Keusch, Professor of Medicine and International Health at Boston University's Schools of Medicine and Public Health, stressed that no release of ...
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503 views

Are Teslas with autopilot system safer than vehicles without it?

An AP article describes some recent crashes that may have been linked to the Tesla autopilot system. The article states that there have been three fatal crashes since 2016 potentially linked to the ...
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Is Radio Frequency Radiation carcinogenic at the FCC's 1996 exposure limits?

A 2019 Scientific American blog article, We Have No Reason to Believe 5G Is Safe, by Joel M. Moskowitz, warns about the safety of 5G wireless technology. Yet, since [the 1980s], the preponderance ...
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Does having your bedroom door closed while sleeping improve fire safety?

The UL (formerly Underwriter Laboratories) has a Fire Safety Research Institute (FSRI) that claims that sleeping with the bedroom door closed reduces the risk of being killed in a fire: UL FSRI ...
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Do reduced vehicle weight compromise safety? [closed]

According to this old article, reduced vehicle weight does not compromise safety. Figure 1 shows that the risk associated with lightweight cars has a very wide range. In other words, weight does ...
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Were pen cap holes designed to prevent death by suffocation if swallowed?

Someone posted the following trivia on a social media website: Do you know that pen caps have holes so that if someone swallows a cap, then air could still pass through? This started a small ...
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Does cutting paper dull a knife quickly? [duplicate]

This question is a follow-up to "How to test the sharpness of a knife?", my answer to it, and the comments my answer generated. Charlie Brumbaugh wanted to know how to tell when he is done when ...
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Are roads more dangerous when it first rains?

From DriversEd.com: Rain: Slow down at the first sign of rain, drizzle, or snow on the road. This is when many road surfaces are most slippery because moisture mixes with oil and dust that has not ...
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Is it less dangerous to box without gloves than with gloves?

From this YouTube video by Today I Found Out, Most pertinent here, is that neither boxer would be wearing gloves in such a classic match. As paradoxical as it sounds, boxing without gloves is ...
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Are eggs safe to consume once they reach 70 degrees celsius

In the Homemade Eggnog {Non Alcoholic} eggnog recipe featured on the website Annie's Noms as part of the recipe the author makes the claim that at 70 celsius the eggs are safe to eat. As below ...
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Are American standards on automotive turn signals demonstrably less safe than European ones?

In most countries outside North America, vehicles have separate turn signals which are amber rather than red. In the USA (and probably Canada) this is not part of the standards and a flashing brake ...
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Is “Islamic fasting” healthy?

I live in a mostly Muslim country (Morocco). Now we are in the month of Ramadan. First, I had to define Ramadan: Is 30 days (or 29) where practicing Muslims can neither eat or drink or having sex, ...
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Has the Javan devil leaf nettle (urtica urentissima) been shown to cause any deaths?

According to Sir Stephen Tallents, writing in The Spectator, 12 March 1943: The sting of a certain Java nettle, for example, may last for a year and is reputed even to cause death. Mrs. M. Grieve, ...
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Is filling multiple vehicles in one transaction at a gas station a safety hazard?

According to this gas station, pumping gasoline into more than one vehicle is a serious safety hazard: The gas station making this claim charges different customers different prices per gallon ...
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Do defensive driving courses reduce car accidents in teenage drivers?

A fairly common claim is that young learner drivers should take defensive driving courses so that they know what to do if they lose control of their car. This comes with the implications it will ...
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Are schools with armed guards or police safer?

The Huffington Post recently ran a story featuring Wayne LaPierre, the head of the NRA saying that, "Putting police and armed security guards in our schools to protect our children ... it's the ...
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Were there armed guards at Columbine?

Ran across this editorial by Brandon Friedman in the NY Daily News: Arming teachers in the classroom will cost kids' lives ... There were armed guards at Columbine, the Pulse nightclub and in ...
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Were there 18 school shootings in the US from Jan 1 to Feb 14, 2018?

CBC Radio (Canada) reported earlier this evening that the Florida shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School "was the 18th school shooting in the U.S. since the beginning of 2018.". On its face ...
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471 views

Has 2017 been the safest year in commercial aviation?

President Trump seems to be implying that him being strict on commercial aviation led to 2017 having been "the best and safest year on record". When reading carefully, he does not claim that outright; ...
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Has president Trump been “very strict on Commercial Aviation”?

President Trump seems to be implying that him being strict on commercial aviation led to 2017 having been "the best and safest year on record". When reading carefully, he does not claim that outright; ...
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Are ladders more dangerous than guns? [closed]

You know, studies show that keeping a ladder inside the house is more dangerous than a loaded gun. That's why I own ten guns, in case some maniac tries to sneak in a ladder. - Grunkle Stan I've ...
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Do fire drills make building occupants safer?

Fire drills are widely practised in schools and other buildings. Wikipedia explains: The purpose of fire drills in buildings is to ensure that everyone knows how to get out safely as quickly as ...
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Was there a Soviet anti-motorcycle-helmet campaign in the late 1950s and early 1960s?

Lessig (1995, pp. 964–965) writes: Before the 1960s, motorcyclists in Soviet Russia did not wear helmets. In part this was because of a lack of any perceived need to wear helmets; in part it was ...
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Do green grapes cause more accidents on the London Underground than banana peels?

In Teary Deary's Horrible Histories: London, he claims that green grapes cause more accidents on the London Underground (I presume subway) than banana peels. This claim is also repeated in several ...
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Does nuclear power cause fewer deaths than other forms of electricity production, accidents included?

There have been several questions related to nuclear power in comparison to other forms of electricity production: Are there fewer accidental deaths at nuclear power plants than others? Do coal ...
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Do cellphones pose any harm to pacemaker users?

In Japan it is very common to see signs on trains that encourage/require you to turn off your phone on trains, or just near the priority seating areas. The thinking goes that the signals somehow ...
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Is paramotoring the safest form of personal aviation?

Paramotoring is the of sport of powered paragliding, where participants strap a 2 stroke motor to their back and a parachute, which they dub a wing, in order to fly. Blackhawk Paramotor, America's (...
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585 views

Does removing headguards in boxing reduce concussion?

In this tweet from the Economist: The International Boxing Association claims that concussions went down 43% when headguards were removed pic.twitter.com/95KltTdapB— The Economist (@...
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Do childrens' playgrounds designed to be safe reduce injuries to children?

In Tim Harford's book-length argument that some degree of messiness is, contrary to much modern opinion, a good thing, he makes an argument late in the book that applies to the spaces where children ...
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Is the self-driving car technology of 2017 less lethal than human drivers?

Youtube channel veritasium, on a video called "The real moral dilemma of self-driving cars" (ref) claims that if all cars in 2017 were self-driving, hundreds of lives could be saved. So he is claming ...
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What if everyone in a city flushed their toilets at once?

"The applied theory of price", by Donald N McCloskey claims: If all people flushed their toilets at once, the city water mains would burst. How much damage (if at all) will a drainage system in a ...
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Does using a neck brace reduce damage taken in a car crash?

In the movie Focus, you can find this scene, where a man puts on a neck brace, before crashing into another car, and this same guy seems to be the only one unscathed. I know movies tend to portray ...
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Does teaching 6-12-month old infants to back float reduce their risk of drowning?

The American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend water safety lessons for babies less than one year old: The water-survival skills programs for infants may make compelling videos for the ...
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Is aluminum foil safe to use with food?

Prompted by comments in the family, help me clear this up. A Google search for is aluminum foil safe yields articles that claim it's dangerous, as well as articles that claim it's safe. So which one ...
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Do strobes on top of school buses improve safety?

Background In many states of the USA, school buses are fitted with a "roof-mounted strobe". In some states, they are required by law: Mike Simmons, state director in Arkansas, says that the state'...
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Do frozen foods remain safe indefinitely?

I just found in my freezer some foie gras from two years ago. It's not cooked and is very well wrapped in aluminium foil and plastic foil. My freezer has been kept at -20 °C ( -4 °F) or below. I ...
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Did Boeing and Douglas know about the dangers of square windows before the Comet accidents? [closed]

In aviation circles, the de Havilland Comet is well known not only for being the first jet-powered commercial airliner, but also for the more ignoble distinction of having crashed numerous times due ...
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Is it dangerous to run with scissors?

It was common when I was growing up to be told not to run with scissors. It seems the adults were particularly concerned about the risk of severe injury should I fall. Is there evidence that running ...
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Does “reverse sound technology” make headphones safer?

Purebuds Earphones claims that their use of "Reverse Sound Technology" makes their earbuds safer, preventing hearing damage. I searched for a scientific study of this technology, or at least a good ...
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Is 2.4GHz IEEE 802.11 (WiFi) Dangerous? [duplicate]

Over the years, I've heard (and read about) various dubious claims and doubtful allegations regarding the dangers of WiFi & 2.4GHz wireless ISM band communications in general. The stories ...
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Is yellow the most conspicuous color?

It is often claimed that yellow (or a particular hue of yellow or yellow-green) is the most conspicuous color. This supposed fact is used in many industries from safety to advertising. This reasoning ...
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Has 98% of Europe banned water fluoridation? [duplicate]

I came across this gem on facebook today. It contains no sources, makes a bold claim with a numerical statistic to "back it up", and has been "shared" and "liked" thousands of times in the last ~48 ...
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Does the TSA have a fail rate of 95% in breach tests?

Does the TSA fail at a rate of 95% at detecting (fake, "test") terrorists in breach tests, as reported in this news story? The best information that I have about this is a news report. Is there any ...
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Does speeding increase the risk of accident? [duplicate]

The article, studies show higher speed limits do not increase accidents , claims that increased speeding does not increase your chance of falling into an accident. However, another article Speed and ...
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Are sprout seeds safe to eat?

In this article called “8 façons de t’intoxiquer à un barbecue” (which could be translated by “8 ways to poison yourself at a barbecue”), a Canadian skeptic talks about sprout seeds : I would ...
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Is GHB safe to consume?

GHB is illegal and has received considerable media attention as a highly dangerous recreational drug, However, there is a June 1997 article by Life Enhancement Magazine, that endorses the use of GHB ...
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Do loud motorcycles prevent accidents?

In my neighbourhood, there is one of these inconsiderate people who has a loud motorcycle. I've already told him that his motorbike wakes me up, and he politely apologizes, but then does nothing about ...