Questions tagged [safety]

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

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Does Honda Civic CNG fare well in crash safety tests as claimed by its manufacturer?

Honda touts great safety for their Civic CNG, but I have second thoughts concerning their fuel tank's safety in rear-end collisions. I looked for some tests and data, but could not find anything ...
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12 votes
2 answers
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Does wearing a mask on the back of one's head protect against tiger attacks?

Today while visiting the tiger exhibit at my local zoo, I read that in areas where tiger attacks on humans are common, people will often wear a mask on the back of their head to ward of tiger attacks, ...
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28 votes
2 answers
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Will sticking a knife into a toaster electrocute me?

As a child, do you remember being told not to stick metal utensils into the toaster to unlodge toast? If by chance that utensil touches the wrong thing inside of the toaster, you could be easily ...
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10 votes
0 answers
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Does "dirty electricity" cause cancer?

Research by Magda Havas, Ph.D., of Trent University in Canada, and U.S. epidemiologist Samuel Milham, M.D., links something called “dirty electricity” with diabetes, malignant melanoma, and cancers of ...
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21 votes
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Are bone conduction headphones safer with regards to hearing loss?

In this video, at about 1:35, a claim is made that bone conduction headphones are safer with regards to hearing loss, because the sound doesn't "affect the eardrum". Is that true? I thought hearing ...
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8 votes
1 answer
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Is lean finely textured beef (LFTB) or "pink slime" safe to eat?

Currently in the United States ground beef can be sold under the label "100% ground beef" as per the the USDA Food Standards and Labeling Policy Book (August 2005); however, there have been a number ...
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1 answer
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Is it unhealthy to reuse cooking oil?

I've heard that reusing cooking oil can be unhealthy. For example: Never re-use cooking oil once it has been exposed to heat. It is a recipe for trans fats and cancer-causing carcinogens. -Source ...
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9 votes
2 answers
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Are added nitrates and nitrites in our diet harmful?

It is widely claimed that meat-curing agents containing nitrates or nitrites are dangerous food additives. This site puts them in a top ten list of bad food and recommends avoiding cured meats, ...
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18 votes
1 answer
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If I drop my cycle helmet, do I need to buy a new one?

In conversation with my housemate last night he said that if a cycle helmet is dropped, even from a height of a meter or so, onto a hard surface then it needs to be replaced. He said the internal ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Are synthetically produced chemicals not found in nature more likely to be harmful than naturally occurring ones?

Since everything is made from chemicals the often made claim that we should avoid food that doesn't contain chemicals doesn't make any sense. But the underlying idea that synthetic chemicals are ...
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8 votes
1 answer
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Are dioxins the most toxic chemicals known to science?

Dioxins are implicated in The Seveso disaster in Italy and the lingering disputes about deformities and birth defects caused by the use of the Agent Orange defoliant in the Vietnam war (Wikipedia ...
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117 votes
1 answer
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Were children safer in the good old days?

Edited, as every site I found in my search last night gave me sites that all say the same thing: The perception is that the world is a really dangerous place for children these days But the ...
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6 votes
4 answers
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Are BMW Owners the worst drivers?

BMW drivers are widely thought to be poor drivers. For example, in a poll for Auto Trader: Around 21,000 motorists were quizzed, and 45 per cent said BMW drivers were the worst on the road. Is ...
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35 votes
2 answers
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Does the 'two-second rule' provide a valid minimum gap for safe driving?

Most of us will have been taught the two-second rule when learning to drive. The two-second rule is a rule of thumb by which a driver may maintain a safe following distance at any speed. The rule ...
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75 votes
1 answer
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Do razors with more blades work better?

A known disposable razor company is claiming on their web site that their current product is superior to their old one because it has 5 blades instead of three. You can see the claim on the "science" ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Is it safe to drink 'expired' cola/pop/soda in an aluminum can?

I understand that carbonation might not last forever, and diet beverages don't taste good after a period of time, but I've always believed that the expiry date on the can doesn't matter, provided it's ...
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1 answer
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Is Mephedrone as dangerous as UK government advice claims?

Mephedrone is an amphetamine-like designer drug that was, until recently, not strictly illegal in the UK. . See Nature news story here which also covers the controversy around the original ban in the ...
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16 votes
0 answers
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Is online dating unsafe?

Is there any evidence to support the common conception that one is more likely to be physically injured when dating someone met online as opposed to someone met "offline"?
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24 votes
2 answers
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Are big cars and SUVs safer than small cars or do they just *feel* safer?

I've long observed that many drivers in the UK choose SUVs (which are often disparagingly called Chelsea Tractors) do so at least partially because they believe such cars to be safer. I doubt this ...
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16 votes
2 answers
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Do sharks quickly respond to blood in the water?

This seems to be portrayed in movies and TV quite often: we find a group of travelers desperately stranded on a small boat or raft. For one reason or another someone becomes injured and blood is ...
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43 votes
5 answers
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Is drinking raw milk more dangerous than drinking pasteurized milk?

In Australia "raw milk", more commonly known as un-pasteurised milk, is mostly illegal for human consumption, except in one state, I do believe. The consensus appears to be that pasteurising the milk ...
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24 votes
4 answers
6k views

Are slick bicycle tires more slippery in the wet?

I always assumed slick (tread-less) tires were more prone to loss of traction in the wet. That is until I read this answer on the bicycles SE which claims that bicycle tires are too thin, round and ...
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13 votes
3 answers
1k views

Will increased speed limits on motorways (or highways) cause significant harm?

The UK government has recently started a consultation on increasing the speed limits on motorways (roughly the equivalent of highways in the USA) in England. So it seems appropriate to pose the ...
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9 votes
2 answers
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Seat belts in cars save the lives of occupants in cars, but do they lead to lower deaths for all road users?

Reading and contributing to the skeptics debate about the effects of cycle helmets reminded me of the much more significant debate on seat belts in cars. Most countries seem to have accepted that ...
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15 votes
2 answers
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Are there any toxic or dangerous food pairings?

Are there any foods that are harmless when eaten alone yet are dangerous or toxic when eaten together with another otherwise innocuous food? There can obviously be problems if you combine acidic ...
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8 votes
1 answer
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Are there better or worse days for ordering sushi as far as safety/fish quality?

I have seen and heard assorted conflicting advice as far as "don't order sushi on Monday"/"Best sushi is on Tuesday" etc... None of the multiple opinions matched in the details but all of them ...
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2 votes
1 answer
3k views

Snus or smoking tobacco: Which one is more harmful

Recently, governments in developed countries have been trying to reduce smoking. In Sweden, perhaps due to these efforts or because of the cold climate (because it's impossible to smoke outside in ...
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17 votes
1 answer
91k views

Do open windows increase the chance of lightning striking the house?

There's a widespread belief among most of the people I know that all windows should be closed during a storm as having them open is supposed to attract lightning (or, according to some people, can ...
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  • 273
25 votes
3 answers
10k views

How unhealthy are aluminum cooking pans?

It is regularly stated that aluminum cooking pans are unhealthy, but I come accross them very often. I see people cooking both alkaline and acid foods in them, scrape them with metal, leave food ...
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9 votes
1 answer
3k views

Can riding a motorcycle without earplugs cause hearing damage?

I've heard claims before that when riding a motorcycle, wind noise (especially on the highway) is loud enough that it will cause eventual hearing loss. Personally, I ride a motorcycle, and I usually ...
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9 votes
2 answers
560 views

Can diabetics with pumps be killed from a half mile away?

Black Hat: Lethal Hack and wireless attack on insulin pumps to kill people Like something straight out of science fiction, an attacker with a powerful antenna could be up to a half mile away from ...
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1 vote
0 answers
144 views

Is it bad to turn on a cell phone and electronic devices during a commercial flight? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Are personal electronics a risk to commercial aviation? Flight attendants usually asks for cell phone to be switched off throughout the flight, and other electronic device (...
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15 votes
1 answer
4k views

What's the safest place in a house during an earthquake?

In my childhood, I heard that the safest place indoors during an earthquake is in any doorway or in the bathroom (toilet). Doug Copp, Rescue Chief and Disaster Manager of the American Rescue Team ...
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38 votes
2 answers
39k views

Can you recharge non-rechargeable alkaline batteries?

There are conflicting reports of whether it is possible to safely recharge alkaline batteries (not lithium) that are not sold as rechargable. The packaging for batteries regularly has cautions ...
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36 votes
1 answer
14k views

Can you get your legs stuck around a pole, leading to cramping and then death?

I came across this video that makes a series of claims based around a position that a person can apparently get stuck in around a pole, and unintentionally kill themselves: Hot girl tied to tree with ...
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20 votes
2 answers
3k views

Do elderly drivers cause the most accidents?

Has it been statistically or empirically proven that elderly drivers (65 and over) are responsible for more accidents than any other age group? Some offer figures such as: In 2001 drivers over 70 ...
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14 votes
0 answers
387 views

Is there a huge gas bubble below the Gulf of Mexico floor ready to wreak havok?

I was sent the video HERE a bit back, which gave me pause. It was sent by a family member who at least grants plausibility to 9/11 conspiracies and some other, shall we say, "fringe" theories about ...
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29 votes
3 answers
1k views

Do cars pass with less space for bicyclists who wear helmets?

This question is an off-shoot of from the discussion about helmet safety. There is an assertion that when a car passes a bicycle, it allows less space to those who wear a helmet than those without. ...
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20 votes
2 answers
3k views

Is riding with strangers unsafe?

A commonly taught adage is to never accept a ride from a stranger. This applies mostly to children and goes hand in hand with warnings about accepting gifts from strangers. Now, having grown older, I ...
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78 votes
3 answers
6k views

Does wearing a bicycle helmet make the cyclist safer?

Does wearing a helmet while bicycling make an individual cyclist safer? That is, in the case of an accident, is one safer wearing an helmet? If yes, are the odds of an accident lower, higher or ...
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7 votes
1 answer
457 views

Are there harmful levels of mercury in High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)?

Are there harmful levels of mercury in High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)? I was first alerted by this article which claims: She was then promptly shipped a big vat of HFCS that was used as part of ...
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26 votes
1 answer
32k views

Does home-WiFi expose you to less radiation than using the 3G on your cell-phone?

Are there any studies that compare WiFi and cellular data usage, in the home, over time? Mainly I've heard that WiFi uses more battery (so it should emit more radiation) but OTOH it feels like 3G/...
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8 votes
1 answer
12k views

Is there a potential hazard daisy chaining extension leads

In the UK, electricians tell me that 'it is against regulations' to plug a 4 way extension lead into an existing 4 way extension lead. Is this a safety issue? Surely, if the first extension lead in ...
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20 votes
2 answers
10k views

Is the Kinect IR laser safe?

The Microsoft Kinect uses an IR source (laser or just diode?) to project a pattern in order to get 3D data on what it's looking at. As low-power IR is invisible and intangible, many people have ...
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  • 3,816
13 votes
2 answers
2k views

Does lowering the legal BAC make driving safer?

Lower legal blood alcohol concentration limit laws are passed under the assumption that a lower legal limit will reduce the number of accidents. For example, the U.S government lowered the legal BAC ...
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10 votes
3 answers
1k views

Ammonia content of beef in USA

Is it true that 70% of ground beef found in the United States when sold is 30% by-weight ammonia (which is not on the label), and that the beef used is essentially only usable for pet food except for ...
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25 votes
3 answers
4k views

Are safety belts in planes meant for safety?

I was travelling by air today, and I realized that there's an important difference between safety belts in cars and planes. A safety belt in a car moves from the chest on one side to the hip on the ...
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  • 3,266
15 votes
1 answer
980 views

Fighting fire with electricity. Plausible?

The article "Fighting fire with volts: How water hoses could be replaced with electric wands" gives exciting news about possible new way of extinguishing fire, researched by Ludovico ...
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  • 3,409
22 votes
2 answers
9k views

Is nuclear fusion energy as safe as its proponents claim?

With my limited knowledge of the process of nuclear fusion energy, this seems like one of the most promising methods for producing huge amounts of energy, with relatively very low risk, once ...
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-5 votes
3 answers
5k views

Has any Peer-Reviewed Double Blind Study been made on any vaccine regarding efficacy?

I can not even find one Peer-Reviewed Double Blind Study of any vaccine. Can you point out some studies for me, if they are available?
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