No injuries reported in County Fermanagh explosion

first_img Facebook News, Sport and Obituaries on Monday May 24th RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Nine til Noon Show – Listen back to Monday’s Programme Facebook Google+ Loganair’s new Derry – Liverpool air service takes off from CODA Previous articleToland makes Man City debut in the USANext articleGOT writer George RR Martin feels ‘liberated’ since TV Series ended News Highland Arranmore progress and potential flagged as population grows Twitter Twitter No injuries reported in County Fermanagh explosioncenter_img By News Highland – August 19, 2019 WhatsApp Important message for people attending LUH’s INR clinic Pinterest AudioHomepage BannerNews WhatsApp Google+ DL Debate – 24/05/21 Pinterest There’s been an explosion near Wattle Bridge in County Fermanagh, closer to the border with Cavan and Monaghan.Local SDLP Cllr Adam Gannon says his understanding is that police and bomb disposal teams were working to make another device safe yesterday and into today when a secondary device was triggered nearby.Urging people to go to the PSNI with any information, he says murdering or maiming police officers achieves no goals, and it is a crime that has no support in Fermanagh.Local MP Michelle Gildernew says it’s lucky no one died………….Audio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.last_img read more

Second Pseudoephedrine Shipment Seized This Week

first_imgBy Dialogo June 19, 2009 Guatemala, June 18 (EFE). – Official sources informed today that the security forces of Guatemala seized a pseudoephedrine shipment valued at 17.2 million quetzals (approximately 2.2 million dollars), the second this week. A spokesperson of the Civil National Police (PNC) told EFE that the antinarcotics agents of that institution seized the drugs Wednesday night in a warehouse at La Aurora International Airport in Guatemala city. It is a cargo of 148,400 pseudoephedrine tablets, which is believed to be shipped from Bangladesh. “We are investigating the source and destination of the cargo, as well as the way in which it entered the country,” he indicated. Last Monday, antinarcotics agents seized a cargo of 17, 562,000 pseudoephedrine tablets in the port of Quetzal, on the Pacific coast. It was found in a container carried in the boat “Libra Rio”, coming from India. The cargo was valued at approximately 32,48 million dollars. The police spokesperson said that no arrests were made when both cargos were seized. Last February, the Guatemalan government prohibited the import of pseudoephedrine because of its use in the manufacture of synthetic drugs such as ecstasy.last_img read more

World Cup in good hands: coaches

first_img26 February 2010Much has been written about the first African nation to host a Fifa World Cup™, from ringing endorsement to harsh criticism. As the 11 June kick-off approaches, who better to hear from than some of the coaches of the national teams who will grace the big event? caught up with a selection of the national team supremos who were in Sun City in South Africa’s North West province for a Fifa team workshop last week and can confirm that, as far as finalists themselves are concerned, the 2010 Fifa World Cup™ could not be in better hands.“We coaches, and everyone else who comes to this tournament, have to make this the best advertisement for Africa,” said Vicente del Bosque, coach of a Spanish side hotly tipped to lift the trophy for the first time. “This continent needs it, and I believe these finals will be every bit as successful as the previous 18 editions.”The Spanish tactician, who got a taste of South Africa at last year’s Fifa Confederations Cup, was not the only one delighted to see the elite of world football coming to the continent. Uruguay coach Oscar Tabarez felt the most significant thing was that “the tournament was being played outside Europe and the Americas.“All the populations of the world have the right to host a World Cup which, given the huge amount of organisation and logistics involved, appeared to be increasingly beyond the reach of less-well-off countries,” Tabarez said.Paving the wayThe Celeste supremo, who was also at the helm of his national team at Italy 1990, went further, saying: “It could even pave the way for another African country to host the event, perhaps in the north of the continent.“South Africa faced considerable challenges in organising this event, like improving the road network and the availability of public transport, but it’s worth it as it’s all in aid of the best sporting event on the planet.”Of the coaches who attended the workshop, almost all had been to South Africa before – most for last December’s Final Draw, others for the Fifa Confederations Cup in 2009, and more still to sample its delights while on vacation.Marcello Lippi, coach of defending champions Italy and visiting South Africa for the third time, said there was “a huge determination here to make the most of this exceptional opportunity. Every effort is being made to ensure this tournament continues to be a great success.”‘I love this country’Echoing that sentiment was Germany coach Joachim Low, who has visited South Africa on “countless occasions”. How would he sum it up? “I love this country, and the sense of pride the public feel to be hosting the World Cup is palpable.“The people here know how to enjoy themselves, that’s apparent, and we’re looking forward to coming here in June to join the party,” Low said.Another to have visited the homeland of Nelson Mandela on numerous occasions was New Zealand supremo Ricki Herbert. “We were very impressed with the facilities available for the Confederations Cup,” Herbert said. “It’s a great country with very friendly people, and I’m sure visiting fans will fall in love with South Africa.”With his vast experience in African football, Algeria coach Rabah Saadane said he was “confident the tournament would be organised perfectly. The shared commitment and hard work being done by Fifa and the LOC is very apparent. There’s no reason at all to be worried.”Ideal weatherSaadane had other grounds for optimism, saying: “The weather should help produce better games – it’ll be ideal.” It was a theme also touched on by Del Bosque and Lippi, who both felt that playing in the South African winter would reduce the incidence of physical exhaustion.“I’ve been here seven or eight times,” said Australia coach Pim Verbeek, “and I’ve always enjoyed it, including as a tourist. It’ll be a fabulous tournament, mark my words. I haven’t the slightest doubt that everything will be very well organised.”South Africa’s organisers face the considerable challenge of following Germany in the hosting of sport’s premier event. France coach Raymond Domenech had his say on the issue. “We’re in Africa, not Germany. Just because there are differences doesn’t mean it won’t be a success here. On the contrary, it’s a challenge for everybody, and one that I have no doubt will be met successfully.”Source: Fifa.comlast_img read more

Energy-Efficient Building for Everyone

first_imgBuilding to DOE Zero Energy Ready specsMandalay has projects underway in two two climate zones, 2B and 4. Winters are balmy by New England or Minnesota standards, but an average summer in Phoenix would quickly wear most people out. (Every single day this past August, for example, the high temperature topped 100°F, reaching 117°F on August 14.) Rainfall averages about 8 inches a year.Among requirements for meeting the DOE Zero Energy Ready standard, houses must be certified to Energy Star 3.0, have a building envelope that meets or exceeds requirements of the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code, have all ducts inside the thermal boundary, and meet certain provisions of the EPA WaterSense program.Mandalay does it with 2×6 exterior walls framed on 16-inch centers and insulated with 3 1/2 inches of open-cell spray polyurethane foam, R-4 of continuous rigid foam on the exterior, and a sealed attic with R-31 of open-cell foam applied to the bottom of the roof deck. According to a DOE description of the project, houses are built on post-tensioned concrete slabs insulated with R-8 of vertical rigid foam on the perimeter but nothing underneath.Airtightness in this year’s award winning home was 1.66 air changes per hour at a pressure difference of 50 pascals. Other features include tankless water heaters, high-efficiency gas furnaces with 15 SEER air-conditioning coils, energy-recovery ventilators, double-pane windows with a solar heat gain coefficient of 0.22, drought-tolerant plantings with drip irrigation, LED lighting, and a photovoltaic system rated at 8,000 watts. Like all of its houses, this one is prewired for a 240-volt electric vehicle charger.Its HERS index was -2. Working with subs to improve efficiencyThe company built 90 homes this year and had sales of between $55 million and $60 million. It hopes to build 120 houses next year, and it’s had to work hard with its subcontractors to meet its efficiency and production goals.When Mandalay began building high-performance housing three years ago, it quickly realized that air-sealing the building envelopes would be key. Ferrell said that the company went to one framing sub and asked if he could help meet Mandalay’s airtightness goals — and promptly got turned down. The framer said no, Ferrell called, because he didn’t trust his crews to do it. Mandalay went to its painting subcontractor instead, who was more than happy to seal around pipes and wires, and at top and bottom plates.“A painter doesn’t seem like a natural trade for that, but we went to the trade that was willing to do it, and paid them for it. We got them interested in what we were doing,” Ferrell said. “By working with the trades and getting them invested in our goals, and making them feel a part of that process, it makes it a lot easier.“If you go to a trade and say, ‘I need you to do this,’ they’re going to fight you every time. You’re never going to get what you want.”Later, the framer who had originally declined the extra work came back and said he’d changed his mind. “We had to say: No, sorry, you missed the boat,” Ferrell said. But, he added, the company can’t afford to “shove a trade aside.” In some towns where Mandalay is building there aren’t a lot of subcontractors to choose from, so the idea is to build good relations and work hard to get them interested in what you’re doing. What the buyers wantThe awards must look great on the walls at Mandalay headquarters, but Ferrell concedes that most home buyers don’t come in the door asking about a HERS rating or what blower-door tests are showing.“Most buyers don’t care how much insulation is in the wall, or that open-cell spray foam gives them superior air-sealing over batts,” he said. “You know, they don’t care. They want the benefit of it. They want lower energy bills, and fewer allergies over the course of the year. That’s what they’re interested in.”There have been more prospective buyers who have heard of the awards the company has won. Yet the company is in a highly competitive business where buyers are often willing to spend more on granite counters or travertine tile but still pinch their pennies on high-performance features like PV systems.“There is a small minority of buyers that say they want to spend $15,000 on a photovoltaic system. Yes, we have those buyers,” Ferrell said. “But by and large, they’re buying for the community, they’re buying for the floor plan, they’re buying for the features and finishes they’re going to live with.“The balancing act we play is we have to build a beautiful home, a home that fits in the marketplace for the area we live in, that’s attractive to the buyers we’re trying to attract, and do all those energy things we’re committed to doing.”center_img Arizona builder Mandalay Homes hopes to build 120 houses next year, increasing by one-third the number of completions in 2015. No matter what the price tag, every one of them will get exactly the same energy-efficiency features.For the third year in a row, the builder picked up a Housing Innovation Award from the Department of Energy, this year sharing “grand winner” status with KB Home of Los Angeles in the competition’s production housing category. Last year, Mandalay won an Innovation Award for a development of 100 DOE Zero Energy Ready homes, and the year before that it was recognized for an affordable housing project of 14 houses.After turning to high-performance construction just a few years ago, Mandalay says that it is now capable of building a house twice as efficient as a standard new home for $4 or less extra per square foot. Every house the company builds will have a HERS index of 50 or less.“It’s a cornerstone of our business model,” says Mandalay construction manager Geoff Ferrell. “We build a lot of places. The home that won the award is a $750,000 house in an upscale neighborhood, but we also build in some more rural areas where we’re building smaller homes, not quite as tricked out as that one, starting in the mid-$200,000s. As far as performance and energy efficiency we put all of the exact same components in. We use all the same techniques, all the same materials, and we guarantee that all of our homes are going to come in under 50 HERS, regardless of the price point or there they’re being built.”last_img read more

Taylor Decker Tweets At Jaylon Smith, Says He’d Never Try To Injure Another Player

first_imgDetroit Lions offensive lineman Taylor DeckerBALTIMORE, MD – DECEMBER 3: Offensive tackle Taylor Decker #68 of the Detroit Lions looks on from the bench against the Baltimore Ravens in the fourth quarter at M&T Bank Stadium on December 3, 2017 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)Jaylon Smith, Notre Dame’s star junior linebacker, suffered what looked like a devastating leg injury during today’s Fiesta Bowl loss to Ohio State. Smith injured himself trying to regain his balance after taking a shove from Ohio State offensive lineman Taylor Decker near the end of the play. Some thought Decker committed a cheap shot, considering Smith wasn’t near the ball and the play was basically over. However, the veteran lineman took to Twitter a little while ago to clarify what happened. Decker tweeted at Smith, saying he’d never try to injure another player and didn’t intend to put him at risk. @JaeeSmiff9ENT— Taylor Decker (@TDeck68) January 2, 2016This is a very classy move on Decker’s part. The play didn’t look malicious, even if the two players were engaged away from the ball.last_img read more

Jim Harbaugh Retracts, Apologizes For Comments On Colin Kaepernick

first_imgJim Harbaugh addresses a group of reporters.Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh apologized on Twitter shortly after commenting on the motivation behind Colin Kaepernick’s national anthem protest.Earlier today, Jim Harbaugh said he “didn’t respect the motivation” behind San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s decision to sit down during the national anthem on Friday night.Kaepernick, who played for Harbaugh in San Fran from 2011-14, explained his decision on multiple occasions, saying it revolved around the treatment of black people and people of color in the U.S.“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color,” Kaepernick told NFL Media in an exclusive interview after the game against Green Bay. “To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”Just minutes after his initial comments on Kaepernick went public –and caused some criticism on social media–Jim Harbaugh apologized on his favorite medium.I apologize for misspeaking my true sentiments. To clarify, I support Colin’s motivation. It’s his method of action that I take exception to— Coach Harbaugh (@CoachJim4UM) August 29, 2016Looking at the responses to Harbaugh’s tweet, some have accepted his apology, others haven’t and some are wondering why he apologized in the first place. Seems like the man can’t help causing a stir even when he doesn’t intend to.last_img read more

Grande Prairie RCMP looking for missing 16yearold

first_imgGRANDE PRAIRIE, A.B. – Grande Prairie RCMP are seeking the public’s assistance in locating 16-year-old Dawn Rogerson.Dawn was last seen in Sexsmith on January 13, 2019.  There is a concern for Rogerson’s well-being. The RCMP would like to locate and speak with her as soon as possible.Rogerson is described as: Brown HairBrown eyes5″3′160lbsWearing black pants and black hoodie.If you have any information about her whereabouts, please contact Grande Prairie RCMP Detachment at 780-830-5700. If you wish to remain anonymous, you can contact Crime Stoppers by phone at 1.800.222.8477 (TIPS) or by Internet at www.tipsubmit.comlast_img

Collapsed FOB to be dismantled first probe report in 24 hours

first_imgMumbai: A day after a foot overbridge connected to CSMT railway station collapsed, killing six persons and injuring 31, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has decided to dismantle the structure. In a meeting chaired by BMC commissioner Ajoy Mehta Friday morning, it was also decided that the civic body’s Chief Engineer (Vigilance) would conduct an inquiry into the causes that led to the deck of the FOB collapsing on Thursday evening. Ward Officer Kiran Dighawkar said work on dismantling the FOB had begun and cranes and gas-cutters had been assembled for the work. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity! “We aim to open DN Road for vehicular traffic by 7pm Friday,” he said. Another official said the Chief Engineer (Vigilance) has been asked to submit his preliminary report within 24 hours identifying staff responsible and the role of those who carried out its structural audit. The scope of the probe would include the history of the bridge, the time when the structural audit was carried out, and whether the methodology used was appropriate and staff deployed had adequate technical expertise, the official informed. Also Read – Encounter under way in Pulwama, militant killed Earlier in the day, a BMC official had said the FOB was was found to be structurally safe when it was audited in August 2016, soon after a British-era bridge over Savitri River got washed away in monsoon downpour in Mahad in Raigad district. “During that audit, 354 bridges were checked for their structural soundness. The FOB that collapsed on Thursday was marked C2B. This means it needed minor repairs only. Tenders were floated for the repair but it got held up,” the official had said Friday morning. After a visit to the site Friday morning, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had asked Mehta to fix “primary responsibility” for Thursday’s foot overbridge collapse by evening.last_img read more

By Marin Katusa Chief Energy Investment Strategis

first_imgBy Marin Katusa, Chief Energy Investment StrategistIn the third century, greed got the best of Rome’s emperors. As they spent through the silver in the treasury, one emperor after another reduced the amount of precious metal in each denarius until the coins contained almost no silver whatsoever.It was the world’s first experience with currency debasement and hyperinflation. As people saw the value of their savings evaporate, society grew angry and demanded a scapegoat. Christians became that scapegoat, and Romans turned on them with incredible violence.This pattern – currency debasement leading to social upheaval and violence – would repeat many times over.In medieval Europe, the number of women on trial for witchcraft climbed in sync with the debasement of currency. In revolutionary France, the Reign of Terror that slaughtered 17,000 wealthy counterrevolutionaries aligns perfectly with the deterioration of the purchasing power of the assignat note.And in the most vile example: dramatic hyperinflation in Germany in the 1920s allowed Hitler to rise to power by blaming Jews for the country’s economic woes.The connection between currency debasement and social upheaval makes sense – hyperinflation only occurs in times of domestic drama. For example, in 1946 Hungary experienced the greatest episode of hyperinflation on record – in the context of a small, economically limited nation wracked by the Great Depression and then Nazi occupation in World War II. Zimbabwe earned second place in hyperinflation’s record books when its dollar inflated 7.96 billion percent from early 2007 to late 2008. The cause? Robert Mugabe’s land-reform policy slashed agricultural output and destabilized a fragile society.That brings me to today… and to Iran, where that volatile mix of domestic drama and hyperinflation is pushing a fragile society to the brink of revolution.If history repeats itself and Iran descends into revolution, the outcome is both unclear and obvious. In the unclear category: the details of the resulting regime and how far an Iranian revolution might spread through the Middle East. What is obvious, though, are the generalities: a post-revolution Iran would remain Islamist and vehemently anti-US.Another generality is also crystal-clear. An Iranian revolution – and the potential for that to spawn a new set of Shia-based alliances across the Middle East – would be very good for oil.And if Iran’s currency continues its dramatic nosedive, that revolution – and oil-price spike – might be just around the corner.Dark Days for Iran’s RialOn October 3, riot police converged on Tehran’s Grand Bazaar. With water cannons and batons, they dispersed a large crowd of demonstrators who were calling President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad a traitor for his mismanagement of Iran’s economy.The location was significant: The Grand Bazaar is often described as Tehran’s economic heartbeat, and its merchants kick-started the 1979 revolution that ended Iran’s monarchy and ushered in the Islamic Republic.The spark that lit the protest flame this time? The Iranian rial had lost a third of its value against the dollar in the three previous days.But that was simply the latest drop in a currency devaluation that has been both rapid and profound.The rial had been slowly losing value against the US dollar since international sanctions against the country’s nuclear program took effect in mid-2011. The devaluation was gentle for the first year, but picked up speed in June. A few months later, the currency started to freefall.On the weekend of September 8-10, the rial lost 9.7% of its value. On October 1 alone, the rial declined 17%. By the next day the black-market exchange rate reached 35,000 rial to the US dollar, marking an 80% decline in the past year.The massive devaluation is fanning the flames of Iran’s burning fiscal situation. International sanctions over Iran’s nuclear program have accomplished one desired aim: major inflation. The Iranian government says inflation stands at 25%, but unofficial estimates put it much higher, between 50-70%.It all translates into far higher prices on staples like food and fuel. Iranians now pay three times as many rial for meat as they did a year ago. Iran’s farmers rely on animal feed and vaccines that are imported and therefore priced in US dollars, and they have to pass on the increased costs to consumers.In the meantime, unemployment is also rising unchecked. Overall unemployment is close to 15%, while youth unemployment is almost 30%.The Iranian InfluenceSoaring food prices, deteriorating employment prospects, and heavy-handed police tactics kicked off a revolution in another Middle Eastern country not long ago. Tunisian vegetable vendor Mohammed Bouazizi set himself on fire in December 2010 to protest precisely those problems; the ensuing riots started his country down a rapid road to revolution. Tunisia’s transition turned heads across the Middle East, and the Arab Spring was born.Iran’s ayatollahs are now facing a very similar situation. The rial is dying and hyperinflation is creating real potential for full-fledged economic panic. Continued protests like the one in Tehran’s Grand Bazaar would represent a real threat to the ruling regime.The response from above is easy to predict. Iran’s ruling clerics did not hesitate to use force to repress the widespread discontent sparked by President Ahmadinejad’s re-election in mid-2009, and used the same riot police in the Bazaar last week to silence dissidence. Bigger protests will almost certainly draw an even more aggressive response.The regime will also likely offer up a scapegoat. Ahmadinejad is the most likely candidate – he has been clashing with the conservative elite for several years now, and his second and final presidential term ends next summer anyway.Will a combination of repression and Ahmadinejad’s head silence the masses? Maybe, maybe not. When people see their life’s savings evaporate – Poof! – in a pile of worthless paper, they get really mad. And really mad people with little to lose is precisely the fuel that feeds revolutionary fires.However, don’t let Western ideals like democracy and the separation of church and state cloud your idea of a reformed Iran. A new regime in Iran would still be Islamist; indeed, the country would almost certainly remain guided first by religion and second by politics. Generations of Iranians have been taught to believe in Shia Islam above all else, with hatred of the United States coming in a close second. Those pillars of Iranian culture would remain.As such a new Iran could closely resemble the old Iran – but in the meantime, instability could easily spill across the country’s borders. Shia populations in other parts of the Middle East could well gain confidence from Iran’s uprising and begin uprisings of their own, destabilizing the region’s delicate Shia-Sunni balance.Suddenly, Shia populations in eastern Saudi Arabia, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, and Bahrain could demand greater recognition, an end to discrimination, maybe even some form of autonomy. The significance of this cannot be understated. The Middle East is a balancing act on many levels, but maintaining peace between Shia and Sunni Muslims is perhaps the most important balance of them all.Iran, unsteady after a regime change and constrained by international sanctions, would undoubtedly reach out to these Shia populations. Shia connections around the Middle East, long held back by Sunni rulers, would strengthen. A pan-Shia block of allegiances could emerge, replacing the Iran-Syria-Hezbollah partnership with a bigger, stronger group standing against Saudi Arabian – and American – interests in the Persian Gulf.Truly, a riled-up Shia population connected through a new, Iran-based set of allegiances stretching across the Middle East is a recipe for regional disaster.Disaster in the Middle East is a recipe for high oil prices – and a bull market for the ages.Whether the drama remains confined to Iran – where a popular revolution puts a new leader in place who blockades the Strait of Hormuz as a show of strength – or spreads to Saudi Arabia, where a marginalized Shia population finally rises up against their Sunni rulers, Iran’s currency woes mean instability and infighting in the world’s most important oil region. Additional Links and ReadsMad Money‘s Jim Cramer Interviews Sandstorm Gold CEO Nolan Watson (CNBC)Nolan Watson is the president and CEO of Sandstorm Gold, a company Marin has recommended several times. Nolan also holds one of the top spots on the Casey NexTen list of rising resource-sector superstars under the age of 40. In this interview, Nolan explains the royalty model that Sandstorm uses to reduce risk while retaining exposure to metal prices.Chavez Win Means More of the Same for Venezuelan Oil (Reuters)Hugo Chavez’s re-election means that Venezuela’s state oil company PDVSA will remain highly politicized and hobbled under the weight of supporting Chavez’s financial demands. Since PDVSA is forced to spend most of its earnings supporting massive government social programs, the company cannot reinvest sufficiently in its operations – and as a result Venezuelan oil production will almost certainly continue to slide, even though it taps into the biggest crude-oil reserves in the world.US: Gas Replaces Coal as the Favored Fuel (Financial Times)We have seen articles like this before, but updated numbers on the switch from coal to gas for power generation in various parts of the US serve as a good reminder of the magnitude of the shale-gas revolution. In the southeast, for example, Southern Company’s coal plants long provided 70% of the region’s electricity, but in the past four years that share has dropped to 40% and continues to decline.Miners Pressured as Uncertainty Sours Uranium Market (Reuters)Eighteen months after the Fukushima nuclear meltdown, the spot price of uranium hit a two-year low this week, putting the squeeze on the already-depressed shares of uranium miners. Slowing economic growth in China, which is expected to provide much of the support for uranium going forward, is weighing on the metal’s recovery.last_img read more

For more than 60 years it has been the standard o

first_imgFor more than 60 years, it has been the standard of care to try to speed up childbirth with drugs, or to perform a cesarean section if labor was seen as progressing too slowly.Now a new set of recommendations is changing the game.In February, the World Health Organization released a set of 56 recommendations in a report called Intrapartum Care for a Positive Childbirth Experience. One key recommendation is to allow a slow labor to continue without trying to hurry the birth along with drugs or other medical interventions. The paper cites studies showing that a long, slow labor — when the mother and baby are doing well — is not necessarily dangerous.A little history is required to understand the importance of that one recommendation, says Dr. Aaron Caughey, chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Oregon Health & Science University, who did not work on the report. In 1955, Dr. Emanuel Friedman studied 500 women and concluded that labor is normal when, during the intense phase of contractions, the cervix opens at a rate of at least one centimeter (about 0.4 inches) an hour. “Dr. Friedman showed that 95 percent of women progressed” at this rate, says Caughey. “And that became the standard of care.”Called Friedman’s Curve, the standard persisted until 2010 when a large-scale study of more than 100,000 women by Dr. Jun Zhang, a researcher at the National Institutes of Health, concluded that healthy mothers at low risk for birth complications and their babies did just fine even when labor progressed more slowly than one centimeter per hour. In 2014, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology put out a consensus paper co-authored by Caughey overturning Friedman’s Curve, which had been followed by most doctors since the 1950s.But change in practice comes slowly, says Caughey, and many physicians around the world still consider a long, slow labor reason enough to speed it along with a drug like oxytocin or to wheel the mother into an operating room for a C-section.The big take-home message from the report is that a slow labor can be a safe labor. But just as important are the other recommendations that emphasize the kind of care women should be entitled to throughout labor and delivery. Worldwide, 140 million babies are born every year, most of them without complications to mothers or babies. But the recommendations emphasize that too many women suffer during childbirth or don’t have the kind of birth experience they want.The new WHO recommendations include allowing a woman to be accompanied by a companion of her choice during childbirth, honoring her decisions about pain management and delivery position, and providing her with confidentiality and privacy. These guidelines are important all over the world but are particularly relevant in poor countries where resources are scarce and women in labor are often crammed into overcrowded wards.For a closer look at the overall guidelines, we spoke with Dr. Olufemi Oladapo, medical officer in the maternal and perinatal health team at WHO and an author of the recommendations. This interview has been edited for length and clarity.The new recommendations say that a long, slow labor is not a good reason in itself to give drugs to speed labor, perform a C-section or otherwise medically step in. Can you talk about that specific recommendation?This is a game-changing kind of recommendation. It goes against an ages-long benchmark categorizing how quickly labor should progress. Previous thinking was that less than one centimeter per hour was abnormally slow. But we now know that this benchmark is unrealistically fast for some women, and interventions to correct the rate of dilation can do more harm than good. If a woman is dilating slower than one centimeter per hour, as long as she’s making some progress, she can still have a vaginal delivery. Using that old, fixed rule for every woman doesn’t make sense. Just like in many things, humans tend to differ.What do women themselves want in the childbirth experience?Women want to be involved in making decisions. They want a sensitive, caring, well-motivated staff taking care of them. They want to be in control of the process. And, of course, they want a healthy baby and to be healthy themselves. That’s what women are saying they want.The guidelines emphasize respect and dignity. What are some instances of “disrespectful and undignified care” referred to in the report?My department published a review of disrespect of women globally during childbirth. It’s worse in some places than others, but it’s everywhere. It has to do with physical abuse, like slapping the woman on the thigh during delivery. Or yelling and shouting at her to push the baby out. There is negligence, for example, if the woman is left alone for long periods during labor.Are cultural differences taken into account in these recommendations?Yes. An example is the recommendation having to do with birth position. A woman should be allowed to choose the position she wants, maybe squatting or sitting. That might be the position of her culture.Many of these recommendations are aimed at encouraging a normal, vaginal delivery for healthy women not at risk for medical complications. What if some women request cesarean section even though it’s not medically necessary? We make clear that if someone wants an intervention, it’s the responsibility of the provider to explain the pros and cons of an unnecessary medical intervention. In some cultures, the medical intervention is considered the better quality of care.In China, during the one-child policy, many women had cesarean section, maybe because they knew they would only have one child. [An initial C-section usually means other births will also be C-section, which can be even riskier. If mothers know they will only have one baby, they don’t worry about C-section risks.]Now that the policy has changed, I understand that’s changing. But an invasive intervention means the woman is taking an extra risk. You have to explain to the woman that even in a high-income setting, the risk of a cesarean is not zero.How will you spread the word on these recommendations?There has been a lot of social media. We’ll hold regional conferences: Africa in April, Southeast Asia in June. Others will follow. Each region can run individual workshops.What do you hope comes from these guidelines?We hope that every woman receives care that maintains her dignity from the time she walks into a facility until she is discharged.Susan Brink is a freelance writer who covers health and medicine. She is the author of The Fourth Trimester, and co-author of A Change of Heart. Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit” alt=”last_img” /> read more