Tipsy TVs | Ali Strand reporting
They're in almost every home in America and they come in many shapes and sizes. But this popular electronic could be a safety hazard to small children. Amanda Durbin is a mother of four children. Unlike most working parents she finds herself lucky enough to work from home as a childcare provider with a full house. Every day Amanda finds activities that get the kids feet moving. Durbin said "Everyday especially with the childcare in our home, we have dance time every day. So they kind of stand here in the middle of the floor and start to jump around." But what seems like a harmless act could actually be a safety hazard. The US consumer safety products commission says that each year nearly 13,000 children are injured from TV's tipping over and every three weeks a child dies. This is a 31 percent increase over the last ten years.
Carma Hanson said "We're thinking that these are occurring because we are starting to see a lot of flat screen TV's and they are very top heavy and so with parents that don't mount them to their wall or to the furniture that they are on they are very likely to tip over on a small child." It's not only an unstable base of a flat screen TV-but also where the old-larger televisions are being placed. Some parents are placing them on furniture not suited to hold a TV. Hanson also said "You'll notice here we've got a shelving unit and that often times an entertainment style setting that the TV's are placed on where children use these shelving pieces as a step stool or a way to get up and reach and then in the meantime the unit tips over on them." Out of all the households with flat screen TV's, only 1 in 4 mount them to a wall.
The statistics are making parents more aware of the risks. Amanda Durbin said "It kind of makes your heart sink, I mean knowing not only do I have my own children in my home but I also have other people's children that trust me to make sure that their children are safe… It's scary, it will make me think twice when it’s flopping around on my TV stand." By taking the preventative actions suggested by safety experts, this can help TV's stay as a source of entertainment rather than a cause for concern. Because of its weight a 36 inch television falling three feet creates the same momentum as a one year old child falling 10 stories.
It’s a mother’s job to create a nourishing environment for her children. One new movement is creating an opportunity for moms to do that outside the home. Parents have deliberated the best methods of child care for centuries. One of these long debated topics is breastfeeding. Although eight out of ten moms are breastfeeding out of the hospital the number drops down to 15 percent after six months. Many attribute this to mom going back to work. Katie Graham, a mom said "I'm a working mother so working was also a big factor in it. How was I going to be able to continue the breast feed at the same time as working?" In 2007 only twenty six percent of businesses reported having a program or designated space for moms to breastfeed. But a federal law passed in 2010 now requires businesses to accommodate nursing mothers.
Mandy Burbank, a Grand Forks Public Health Dietitian said "This is a law that they have to follow. They have to help accommodate moms that are going to be breastfeeding." A primary concern expressed by businesses is that implementing a program supporting moms who choose to nurse will be expensive. Burbank urges that all moms really need is a private sanitary room which they can access on their already scheduled breaks. Burbank then said "Moms want to breastfeed. They just need help. They need us as worksites they need society to help support them in that cause." The US Department of Health and Human Services says breastfeeding can help the baby by reducing the risk of ear and respiratory infections, diabetes and obesity later in life. Graham said "I feel like it was a privilege to be able to not only give my children life but to give them nourishment after they were born. So I think it is important to support moms who make that choice." With 75 percent of modern moms being working moms, the support of their workplace can make all the difference for those who believe that breast is best. Graham said "It's really beautiful. It actually is." The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that babies receive nothing but breast milk for their first six months.
Beat of the drum | Brian Gendreau reporting
Music sets the tone at live sporting events. The band in one arena wouldn't be complete without a particular member, her instrument and her upbeat attitude. In this arena there are sticks creating energy for thousands to feed off of...but they don't score goals...She celebrates them. Sarah Sevenbergen, a student in the University of North Dakota’s band said, "I like to think I do. I like to think I hold a bit of responsibility in pumping the crowd up." Sevenbergen has supplied the pulse for fans at the Ralph Engelstad Arena for four years, and in a town that sweats hockey in the frigid cold she has become a bit of a celebrity. Sevenbergen said, "She just looks at me, and her mom goes, oh my god, you’re in the band!” Even Sarah's favorite player on the team recognizes the spark she feeds to the fiery fans in Grand Forks. Joe Gleason, UND Senior Defensemen said "Since freshman year I've remembered her banging on the drum before the national anthem before our video montage starts, and everyone starts slow-clapping to that drum beat. It's one of those moments where you're like 'wow' this place is pretty crazy. It's pretty special." Gleason then said "I just kinda do what I love to do, and I get recognized for it, and I guess I don't really realize how big of an impact it makes." Fans show up with spirit and a common goal. It's Sarah's job to get them all marching to the beat of the same drum. Sarah will pass the drum sticks down next year. She plans to graduate in May of 2014 and then join the Peace Corps.
Convenience stores are known for satisfying several needs in one stop. But one C-store is taking the word convenience to a whole new level. Even on a cold blustery day this convenience store is still bustling with people. And in this rural community friendly faces and that "everybody knows everybody" saying is evident. Wayne Melbye, a Convenience Store Manager said "It's a nice community. You go to shop they know you they know you by name. People help you out. It's a great town." This gas station in Crookston, Minnesota is your typical one stop shop for regulars and out of towners. Melbye also says"We have about 25 employees and like I said open 24 hours a day… making sure things run smooth." Stephanie Scheurer, from Studio 1 said "Convenience stores are known for being open 24-seven having car washes and selling gas. But in this small town this store has one more special service to offer." Rick Brekken, a Taxi Driver said "The people are really happy to see that there's a taxi service in town, particularly on the weekends. It's very busy on the weekends. Rick has been a part of the community for 66 years. He used to be a fireman. Now he uses his knowledge of the back roads to drive people to their destinations. Melbye said "It was always this taxi deal that was that was kind of going to be a little bit of a link along with the Tri-Valley bus to try and bring the community together a little bit." Crookston may resemble a one horse town to some.
But this one cab is providing the link to bring this town together. The convenience store taxi service has been up and running for nine months now. With increasing business they're hoping to add another cab in the near future.
Your car can get just as dirty in the winter as in the summer. Many people don’t want to brave the cold just to clean their car. Today we spend a day in the life of a man whose job is to make sure that you don’t have to. Water washing across the dash is not something to expect in the middle of winter. Here at the car wash however, winter cold means washes sold. Joe Srang, Valley Dairy Car Wash Manager: "You know you still have the option to wash it yourself in summertime, but in wintertime with all the snow and ice and salt, we're pretty much the only option." According to company reports, winter can be up to 25% busier than summer, and that increase in business, means an increase in work time. Srang said "We tend to be busy from 8 o'clock in the morning to 6. There'll be no break, just steady, go." With so many cars rolling in each day, it's not surprising to find some a surprise in the backseat. He then said "Some of the unusual things is someone will find a mouse in the backseat or something and try to catch it with the vacuum cleaner." The Tom and Jerry-like hunt with the vacuum makes an entertaining and rewarding story. However, Joe finds far better rewards in the customers who come in each day.
Srang went on to say "Some days are more rewarding than others, you know, to see young kids come in, that their mother couldn't teach them to make their beds and to see them turn into pretty responsible young adults." Joe has had the advantage of a quarter century of customers who want clean cars, many of them regulars. Alice Gullickson, a customer said "I always come here about once every six weeks because I have a sixty mile drive." Srang says "Some of the people that started with us, their children, and in some cases even their grandchildren, are starting to show up.” As satisfied customers drive away, they know that further down the road they'll be back for another carwash. Joe says if there’s no line he can get you in out and on your way in about ten minutes.
The winter months bring cold, snow, and ice. And ice means it's time for hockey. Bill Palmiscno, Superintendent of Recreation, Grand Forks Park District said "We have ten locations throughout the city of Grand Forks, and on a day, if it's 30 degrees outside, every location will be full of kids to play." But even in the cold climate of the Northern Plains, outdoor ice can be hard to get right. The best ice is made when it's cold, but not too cold. Palmiscno said "Anywhere between zero and twenty is a good time, uh, a good temperature to flood ice." Outdoor ice can have significant differences from indoor ice. Most team members say that playing outdoors speeds up the pace of play. Palmiscno explained "Well, outside, they always say the ice is a lot faster, because it's colder." Unfortunately, the heightened speed can make it more difficult for younger players of the game. Palmiscno also said "But with faster ice, you need sharper skates, so a lot of the, you know, younger kids, it gets to be too fast for them." Being outside during the winter may not be most people's idea of fun, but the cold, snow, and ice won't last forever, so hockey players enjoy it as long as they can. I'm Johnathan Metz, reporting for Studio One Weather.