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  1. Ivan Barry Pless
  1. Correspondence to Dr Ivan Barry Pless, Westmount, Quebec, Canada H3Y2V2; barry.pless{at}mcgill.ca

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California permits confiscation of guns from possible threats

A new law in California allows anyone who suspects a close relative might pose a threat, to seek a restraining order that would confiscate any firearms the relative may have. The bill stems from a shooting near a university where six students were killed and 13 injured. The law may also help prevent suicides. The old law only allowed officers to confiscate weapons ‘if their owner has been convicted of a violent crime, deemed mentally unstable or is subject to a restraining order for domestic violence.’ Predictably, gun rights groups who feared it could put ‘law-abiding gun owners in jeopardy’, opposed the bill.

Older motorcylists hospitalised more often

A paper by Brussoni1 in the BC Medical Journal reports that older male motorcyclists are twice as often hospitalised following a crash, than younger ones, and stay in hospital longer. More surprising was her finding that the rate of hospitalisation for the elderly had doubled over the study period, whereas, the rate for men aged 20–44 years fell by 22%. The rates for women stayed the same for all age groups. The conclusion is that ‘counselling that highlights age-related physical and cognitive changes may increase older men's safety behaviours, as could targeted messaging through media, motorcycle riding groups, motorcycle retailers and repair shops.’

Editor's comment: It ‘may’ do so but I doubt if counselling will fare any better here than it has elsewhere.

Tracking shootings by children

USA Today conveyed a report from The News Journal (Delaware) that statistics on children who fire guns are hard to come by and the CDC is being urged to remedy this. Jon Vernick explains why these data are needed: ‘If all you have is information on the victim… then you are missing out on an awful lot of risk factors… Without these data, it's much harder to evaluate whether interventions are effective.’ …

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