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Could using CBD get you arrested for DUI?

Last year, Congress legalized hemp at the federal level and, by extension, a product called CBD when it's derived from hemp. CBD is a compound found in cannabis -- both marijuana and hemp -- that many people believe has healthful and even medical properties. In Tennessee, medical CBD is only legal for those whose doctors have recommended it for a state-qualifying condition.

CBD products aren't supposed to get people high. CBD, by itself, contains a fraction of a percent of THC, the psychoactive compound in marijuana, which is illegal. Today, low-THC CBD products are widely sold, although still of questionable legality. And, according to a Consumer Reports survey, more than 64 million people have tried it in the past two years.

Jury awards $2 billion+ to couple who got cancer from Roundup

A California jury recently issued the largest award yet in litigation over the weed killer Roundup. It awarded $55 million in compensatory damages to a couple who both developed cancer after using Roundup for decades on their property.

Then, in a move one juror said was meant to have a "punch in the gut effect," the jury ordered Bayer AG, the company that now owns Roundup, to pay $2 billion in punitive damages. Punitive damages punish wrongdoing by civil defendants. Bayer AG acquired Roundup maker Monsanto last year for $63 billion. Reportedly because of the litigation surrounding Roundup, the market value of Bayer AG is now worth less than its peak before it acquired Monsanto.

Some CBD products are legal in Tennessee, but are they safe?

Though marijuana and hemp both come from cannabis plants, they have important differences in their effects and legal status.

In December 2018, as part of the Farm Bill, Congress quietly changed federal law to generally allow the cultivation, transport and possession of hemp -as long as it does not contain more than 0.3 percent THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). THC refers to the chemical tetrahydrocannabinol, which is the psychoactive component of marijuana and hemp that causes the feeling of being "high".

But what about the related compound of cannabidiol (CBD), which is mainly found in extractions from hemp?

Roundup: Would a $1-billion punitive damage award change things?

In January 2015, a Monsanto executive wrote an email that many have taken as a "smoking gun." He was writing about the International Agency for Research on Cancer's review of glyphosate, the primary ingredient in Monsanto's Roundup weed killer.

"IARC- they are sending delegates (trying to get names) that are knowledgeable re- gly from EDSP [endocrine disruption] and oncogenicity [tumor-causing] standpoint," he wrote, seemingly worried those delegates might rule that glyphosate causes cancer.

A Monsanto toxicologist responded, "The one billion-dollar question is how could it impact?" The possible implication being that he feared a billion dollars in consequences.

Take the Pool Safely Pledge and learn about pool safety today

Have you taken the pledge to "pool safely"? It could help you stay safer -- and keep your kids safer -- when you're enjoying water fun. Many adults simply don't know what is needed to keep children safe at pools and beaches. Here's a pledge that can help you do just that, brought to you by PoolSafely.gov, a Consumer Product Safety Commission website:

Could a medical condition affect your DUI charge?

Yes. There are a number of medical conditions that could affect your breathalyzer reading. If you suspect that your breath test came out unusually high, you should discuss the situation with your criminal defense attorney, as there may be an innocent explanation for at least some of your blood alcohol content.

One of the more interesting medical conditions that has an effect on breath tests is called auto-brewery syndrome. It's quite rare, but it causes sufferers to create their own alcohol from carbohydrates in their digestive system.

SCOTUS: Tennessee Valley Authority can be sued over safety

Back in January, we discussed a report that many workers were injured or killed after cleaning up a coal ash spill that contaminated the Clinch and Emory rivers. An unlined containment pond at the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Kingston Fossil Fuel Power Plant in Roane County (TN) leaked, sending over 1.5 million tons of coal ash to flood 300 acres.

Of 900 workers who spent years cleaning up the spill, 200 are seriously or terminally ill and at least 30 have died. They were not issued containment equipment, but wore regular gear as they dealt with the noxious sludge, which contained lead, mercury, arsenic and radium.

Grad parties don't have to end in a DUI

Graduation can be an exciting time. It is a tremendous accomplishment and a great excuse to celebrate with family and friends.

No matter what kind of venue you choose to host your graduation party, if there is alcohol, there is a risk that individuals could underestimate how much they have consumed and could overestimate their ability to drive.

Whether you're hosting a party or helping your friends and family stay safe, here's what to watch for at graduation parties this summer.

Should doctors screen adolescents for risky drinking?

Recently, the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force, an independent panel of national experts that makes evidence-based recommendations about clinical preventive services, recommended that adults and pregnant women be routinely screened for risky alcohol use.

However, although risky drinking is a big problem among adolescents, the task force didn't endorse universal screening of this group by primary care physicians. The reason was a lack of research into what interventions are effective with adolescents.

EPA bans methylene chloride for home but not commercial use

Methylene chloride, a chemical used mostly as a paint stripper, has been tied to over 50 deaths since the 1980s. If used without enough ventilation, the chemical can replace the oxygen in the lungs and suffocate the user.

Yet long after the chemical was known to be unsafe, companies kept selling it. Moreover, the EPA also declined to ban it. Now, after public pressure, at least 13 retailers have said they will stop selling products containing methylene chloride. And, in 2017, the EPA concluded that methylene chloride posed an "unreasonable risk" and began the process of banning it completely.

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