May 25, 2013

Briefcase

JACKSON, Miss.

Man sues over lawnmower after yellow-jacket attack

A lawsuit in Mississippi says a man was seriously injured after he was attacked by a swarm of yellow jackets, jumped off his riding lawnmower and was run over by the machine.

Everardo Garfias claims a cut-off switch should have disengaged the engine when he jumped off the Husqvarna lawnmower on July 26 when he was cutting grass in Tate County for his lawn service.

Many lawnmowers have devices that will shut down the engine if the rider gets off the seat while the blades are engaged. In this case, Garfias says the switch was defective.

The manufacturers of the lawnmower and its engine denied the allegations in court records.

The lawsuit said the lawnmower blades sliced Garfias' legs, completely severing one kneecap. He was airlifted to the Regional Medical Center in Memphis, Tenn., for lifesaving treatment, the lawsuit said.

Garfias filed the lawsuit in Tate County Circuit Court in April against Husqvarna Professional Products Inc. and Kawasaki Motors Corp., U.S.A., which made the lawnmower's motor.

WASHINGTON

Orders for durable goods jumped 3.3% last month

U.S. orders for long-lasting manufactured goods rebounded in April, buoyed by more demand for aircraft and stronger business investment. The gains suggest economic growth may be holding steady this spring.

Orders for durable goods, items expected to last at least three years, rose 3.3 percent last month from March, the Commerce Department said Friday. That followed a 5.9 percent decline in March.

A measure of business investment plans increased 1.2 percent. And the government revised the March figure to show a 0.9 percent gain, instead of a slight decrease.

Companies ordered more machinery and electronic products last month, typically signs of confidence. More spending by businesses could ease fears that manufacturing could drag on the economy later this year.

Factories had been seeing fewer orders at the start of the year, in part because slower global growth had reduced demand for U.S. exports. Economists had also worried that across-the-board federal spending cuts and higher taxes might prompt businesses to cut back on orders.

SAN FRANCISCO

Bill against plastic junk in waterways is defeated

A California bill that would have required manufacturers to figure out how to keep the most common plastic junk out of state waterways has died in the state Assembly without a vote.

Assembly Bill 521 was before the chamber's Appropriations Committee on Friday. The panel held it without a vote, effectively killing the legislation for the session.

Each year cleanup crews throughout the U.S. collect millions of pounds of plastic trash from beaches and coastal waterways, with the biggest numbers coming from California's 1,100-mile coastline.

-- From news service reports

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