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Summertime Safety: Tips for Avoiding Injury and Death

Photo by Tim Schoon
University of Iowa
Kyle Losik rides the university's virtual reality ATV simulator. Losik's suit has 17 sensors that help researchers monitor his center of mass, which may shift and lead to a loss of control.

The first injuries and house fires caused by fireworks, recently made legal in Iowa, are on the books.

On this edition of River to River, Ben Kieffer talks with researchers, injury prevention specialists, and medical professionals about avoiding injury and death when dealing with fireworks and other summer time hazards.

The show starts with a conversation with University of Iowa hand surgeon, Dr. Andrei Odobescu, about the many cases of hands and fingers severed by fireworks mishaps that he’s treated.

Then, UI emergency medicine physician Dr. Charles Jennissen discusses new research showing how children and adults use all-terrain vehicles (ATVs). He says that since these vehicles are not designed for roadway travel or drivers under 16 years old, they put people at high risk of injury or death.

"More children under 16 years of age in the United States are killed on ATVs than are killed by bicycle crashes," says Jennissen. "About 700 individuals a year are killed, and there's over 100,000 ED [emergency department] visits for ATV related injuries."

In the second half of the show, guests cover bicycle safety, common farm-related accidents, and what leads to most boating and swimming mishaps.

Guests on today's show include:

  • Dr. Andrei Odobescu, assistant professor in the department of surgery and division of plastic surgery at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics
  • Dr. Charles Jennissen, emergency medicine physician, clinical professor of emergency medicine and pediatrics at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics
  • Corinne Peek-Asa, professor and associate dean for research in the University of Iowa’s department of Occupational and Environmental Health
  • Brandi Janssen, clinical assistant professor in the University of Iowa’s department of Occupational and Environmental Health
  • Susan Stocker, boating law administrator and education coordinator for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Ben Kieffer is the host of IPR's River to River