The grape was eventually removed by a paramedic but the child still died. The third case involved a 2 year old who was snacking on grapes in the park when he started choking. Again, the grape proved impossible to dislodge, and an ambulance was called. Paramedics were on the scene within a minute and successfully cleared the airway. The child suffered two seizures before reaching hospital and, on arrival, required emergency treatment to relieve swelling on his brain and to drain a build-up of watery fluid in his lungs. He spent five days in intensive care before making a full recovery. The airways of young children are small; they don’t have a full set of teeth to help them chew properly; their swallow reflex is underdeveloped; and they are easily distracted, all of which puts them at risk of choking, explain the authors. Grapes tend to be larger than a young child’s airway. And unlike small hard objects, such as nuts, the smooth soft surface of a grape enables it to form a tight seal in an airway, not only blocking this completely, but also making it more difficult to remove without specialist equipment, they emphasise.
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election officials polled by New York University’s Brennan Center last year said they are desperate to replace equipment but lack the cash. DISPARATE IMPACT Voters in poorer areas suffer disproportionately, the center found. navigate hereData collected in Virginia, Ohio, Minnesota and Colorado suggests the poor are more apt to encounter failing machines. Six Minnesota counties buying new machines had household median incomes more than $20,000 higher than jurisdictions not making purchases, the center found. In Virginia, wealthier counties near Washington have upgraded to more trustworthy technology while lower-income counties in the state’s southwest have not been able to afford it, said Edgardo Cortes, the state elections commissioner. “The federal money is not there and in most instances state money is not being made available, either,” said Cortes. “So the entire cost is falling to local governments.” Just as Congress delivered a death blow to punch cards, it should also outlaw paperless touchscreen voting machines and pay for their replacement, said Andrew Appel, a Princeton University computer scientist. But even counties that can afford better voting tech face problems. The clerk of Travis County, Texas, Dana DeBeauvoir, has been trying for a decade to build a bulletproof electronic voting system , because even the scanners that count paper ballots can be hacked. (Of course, such hacking could be detected and remedied by recounting paper ballots manually.) Comment on this story The Travis County system would have a paper trail and use encryption systems to let voters confirm online that their vote counted and wasn’t subject to tampering.
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