Potential Kia Defect

About a week ago, something was brought to my attention which might be the basis for somebody’s lawsuit in the future. My son’s girlfriend was involved in a two vehicle accident, luckily no one was hurt.  My son’s girlfriend was driving a 2015 Kia Soul when the right front corner of her car was hit by another driver trying to run a red light.  The Kia sustained damage to the right front fender, bumper, and headlights.  As accident’s go, this one seemed to have been relatively minor.  However, after her insurance adjuster inspected the car, she decided to total the car.  The adjuster found that a wire that controlled the deployment of the side airbags had been severed during the crash.  As a result, the airbag circuit could be repaired by splicing the wire which wasn’t surprising.  What was surprising was that instead of replacing the wiring harness that controlled the air bags, the entire car had to be rewired!  This meant that the entire body had to be removed and the frame exposed in order to do the work.  This of course, meant that the amount of labor plus the wiring amounted to more than the car was worth, which is why it was totaled.  Now, the potential defect lies in the fact the if the wiring can be severed in a low speed (less than 30 mph) accident causing the side airbags not to deploy, then the protection of the wiring is inadequate.  If the wiring can be severed causing the side airbags to fail, then the defect defeats the purpose of having airbags in the first place.  Has anyone else had this problem?

2015 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 5,800 times in 2015. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

It’s Wintertime!!!

 

Now that Christmas is over and the unusually warm weather sweeping the country is gone, it is time to take some precautions against the effects of cold weather.  Actually, it’s past time.  As silly as it sounds, having your furnace or chimney checked and prepared for winter is something that should have been done in the fall, while the weather was comfortable.  If you’ve procrastinated and put off doing what should have been done months ago, then you might have somewhat of an uphill struggle depending on your part of the country.  In any case, gas and oil furnaces and chimneys should be checked to make sure that carbon monoxide won’t be a problem.  Electric furnaces should also be checked to make sure that all high voltage wiring is in good condition and won’t be a problem later on.  All heating equipment should be cleaned and the air filters replaced at least on a yearly basis.  In addition, gas piping should be inspected for leaks.  Fires and explosions from leaking gas lines seem to be making headlines more often these days.  If you smell gas and know where to turn the main gas valve off – DO IT; then call the gas utility company and report the problem.  Otherwise get out of your building, get a safe distance away, such as across the street or further if need be; call the gas utility and report a problem.  Lastly, don’t hesitate to call 911 and request fire department assistance.  Remember, it’s better to have the fire department on the scene and prepared for an emergency if nothing happens rather than not have emergency assistance if a fire or explosion occurs.  At this time of year, many people will also use portable kerosene and oil filled electric heaters.  These types of heaters must be used with an abundance of caution.  These heaters are typically used inside homes and small spaces.  These heaters also have strict distance requirements and must be kept away from combustible material.  Moreover, small children must be kept away from these heaters while in operation because of the potential burn hazard.  Furthermore, if heat tapes are in use, be sure they are in good condition and are heating water lines as intended.  Be sure that the tapes or wraps are not in contact with combustible material.  If using pipe insulation, be sure that the insulation covers all exposed piping that is subjected to subfreezing temperatures.  Moreover, if your house is on a crawlspace, don’t forget to close the vents on the exterior sides as leaving them open will cause the interior to lose heat and the HVAC unit to run longer than necessary.

Happy New Year

We are now in the beginning of a brand new year.   2015 is gone and with it, all projections, targets, and goals.  A new year requires new definitions for what is to be accomplished in 2016.  Company management should establish the targets for not just sales, but all departments.  But what about you, the individual?  Have you decided what you want to accomplish this year?  Best wishes for a happy and prosperous new year.

Climate Change, Part 2

About two weeks ago, I posted comments about climate change and the conference that was going on in Paris. The conference is now over and according to the Associated Press, 200 nations have agreed on a plan to “ween the earth off fossil fuels”. Obviously, the net effect is to reduce global warming. The article goes on to cite that we have to eliminate 7.04 tons or 15.5 trillion pounds of carbon dioxide in order to keep the surface temperature of the earth from rising. The goal is to keep the temperature from rising more than 1 degree C (1.8 F) .  Although there are plenty of skeptics that doubt the success of such a plan just as there were with the Kyoto Accord, that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t do what we can now to at least slow down the destructive effect of global warming.  We have the technology to implement solar and wind energy producing equipment.  We must make use of it!   But, as I stated in the previous post, all it takes is money.  Is there anyone out there willing to invest in solar cells or wind turbine-generators?

Climate Change and Renewable Energy

The conference on global climate change taking place in Paris is something that all people should be watching.  We are all aware of the drastic weather changes that have been occurring in recent years.  We are also aware of the fact that if we as a people don’t cut back on emissions of carbon dioxide, the climate change problems will only get worse.  So, where’s all the carbon dioxide coming from?  One of the industry’s responsible is the power industry.  Unless a plant is nuclear powered, it takes the combustion of a fossil fuel to make steam.  The steam is then used to turn a turbine which in turn drives a generator.  Technology currently exists where electricity can be produced directly or steam made and electricity produced indirectly.  Two of those technologies involve solar and wind energy.  Much has been written about solar and wind energy, particularly the cost.  The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) advocates that the use of both solar and wind energies and has created programs such as the “Green Power Providers” and the “Solar Solutions Initiative” to promote renewable energy solutions.  If we are going to do our part in saving our planet, what we need is more investment in renewable energy specifically solar and wind energy.

 

 

Changes

A private practice, whether it be a legal, medical, or engineering, is a business.  It’s a big mistake to assume that just because you are a professional, business will automatically come to you.  It’s nice when that happens but, the reality is that you have to work at attracting clients.  That means that you have to know what your potential clients need and then filling that need.  Changes come when anything that affects economic activity causes business to increase or decrease.  When business changes, adjustments sometimes have to be made in personnel, methods, management, and product.  This list is by no means all-inclusive.  Marketing is one of the most important functions in any business.  As business fluctuates, sometimes adjustments have to be made in marketing strategy.  Where direct mail campaigns were once enough to stimulate orders, direct contact with clients might now be necessary to bring in those orders.  However, marketing a professional practice is a little different.  The product is a service.  When I first started, marketing to potential clients consisted of making phone calls and direct mailings.  As business increased and time became more precious, the marketing strategy changed to a quarterly newsletter  that was mailed (not emailed) to clients.  That strategy worked for several years.  From client feedback, the strategy worked because the time interval between mailings seemed to be very acceptable to the majority of the recipients.  As a result, the name of the business was kept in front of the client and at the same time, the client was learning of news that potentially affected the client.

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