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Software Woes Fixed; San Francisco COVID Testing Sites Reopening for Business

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SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) — Software issues that forced the cancellations of hundreds of appointments at city-run COVID test sites in San Francisco over the last two days have been fixed, returning the facilities to full capacity, officials said.

Color, the city’s testing partner, took to social media Tuesday night, saying a fix was in place for the software problem which caused testing sites to shutdown operations in San Francisco and across the country.

“This issue is resolved, and testing sites for @SF_DPH will be open on Wednesday 1/12. If you’re seeking a test, you can book an appointment online or walk in. We are grateful for your patience as we work to care for populations across the country amid this increase in demand.”

Palo-Alto based Color first encountered computer issues on Monday.

Due to outages affecting our software, we have temporarily suspended service at our @SF_DPH testing sites through Tues 1/11. If your appt. was postponed on Mon 1/10 or if you have an appt. for Tues 1/11, we will be in touch via email/text with alternative testing options.

— Color (@Color) January 11, 2022

“The fact that Color system went down nationally — this was a national issue — obviously was extraordinarily concerning and has had a major impact in the last 24 hours in our ability to provide testing for people,” San Francisco Department of Public Health Dr. Grant Colfax said Tuesday morning.

However, Dr. Colfax said there are other issues at play also contributing to problems at test sites, such as staffing shortages.

“Our testing infrastructure is also affected by workers getting sick and the high demand on our system,” he said. “At the local level, we are doing everything we can at the Health Department to expand testing, not only in terms of staffing and physical sites, but we also need the raw materials – the tests. We have ordered tens of thousands of those home test kits. Those home test kits are finally starting to arrive now. That’s a national and international issue.”

On Tuesday, Mayor London Breed ordered the city’s private healthcare providers to increase testing capacity for those in their system and staff, or face fines.

“In August of 2021, the DPH issued an order requiring all healthcare facilities to provide a test within 24 hours when a member of their system or staff is symptomatic or has been in close contact with someone with COVID. This health order is so important and needs to be followed. Right now, that doesn’t seem to be the case in all instances,” Breed said.

“So today, I’m announcing a mayoral order to require all healthcare providers to submit weekly proof to the Department of Public Health that they are meeting this goal, and if they don’t, they could be subject to fines. To be clear, this isn’t about punishment. It’s about everyone doing their part. Our private healthcare providers need to do their part for their members so that our city is not overwhelmed and not able to provide testing in a timely manner.”

Source Here: sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com

Legislation

A First As the World Warms: New Forecasts Could Help Predict Marine Heat Waves

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Scientists have developed a new system to predict when and where marine heatwave is likely to develop.

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Collisions Cause Major Traffic Backups in Bothell and Arlington

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Traffic in the Puget Sound region came to a stop Wednesday morning due to two separate incidents, one in Bothell and the other near Arlington. On southbound Interstate 405 in Bothell, a collision near Highway 527 closed the two right lanes, the Washington State Department of Transportation announced on Twitter. The resulting traffic backup is […]

Source Here: seattletimes.com

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DISH Network to Pay $5.5M Settlement Over Alleged Hazardous Waste Disposal Violations

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OAKLAND (CBS SF) — Satellite TV provider DISH Network will pay $5.5 million to settle a lawsuit accusing it of illegally disposing of hazardous waste in Alameda County and elsewhere in the state.

DISH Network is alleged to have violated California environmental laws by sending hazardous waste to local landfills that are not equipped or authorized to receive the waste.

According to state Attorney General Rob Bonta, audits of DISH facilities in California found that DISH repeatedly disposed of hazardous waste since 2005 in violation of the Hazardous Waste Control Law and Unfair Competition Law.

“If you break the rules, we will hold you accountable,” said Bonta in a press release. “For years, DISH carelessly disposed of and sent hazardous waste to local landfills, ignoring the consequences for our communities and our environment. From there, hazardous chemical elements from electronic devices, batteries, aerosols, and more could seep into soil and contaminate our environment. Today’s settlement is critical. Large corporations like DISH have a responsibility to respect our environmental laws and do their part to protect our state’s precious resources.”

“My Office is committed to holding corporate polluters accountable for violations of state environmental laws,” said Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley in a statement. “Hazardous electronic waste is ubiquitous, and everyone must do their part to keep these items out of the landfill, especially large corporations who handle high volumes of electronic waste.”

As a provider of TV and video services to residential and business customers, DISH employees manage large volumes of electronic equipment, such as remote controls, transformers, and power adapters, various batteries, aerosol cans, and other items classified as hazardous waste.

The Colorado-based company will pay for penalties, costs, and supplemental environmental project to benefit the community while making significant changes to its operations and practices to come into compliance with state law.

Specifically, DISH must:

• Pay $5.5 million, including $3.32 million in civil penalties, $835,500 in litigation costs, and $845,000 for supplemental environmental projects. DISH must also spend $500,000 to implement enhanced environmental compliance measures to ensure proper management of hazardous waste at its California facilities.

• Hire an independent third-party auditor to perform environmental compliance audits at DISH’s 25 facilities across the state;

• Conduct regular inspections of facility trash dumpsters and roll-off containers to ensure the containers do not contain hazardous waste; and

• Provide training to employees to ensure compliance with California’s hazardous waste laws.

According to the attorney general’s and Alameda DA’s offices, the DISH settlement is the fifth case of a telecom industry giant addressing unlawful disposal and management of hazardous waste. The two offices have also successfully prosecuted AT&T, Comcast, DirecTV, and Cox Communications for similar environmental violations related to illegal disposals of large volumes of electronic waste from their cable and satellite video services.

Source Here: sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com

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