Carnival or Oceania: Can You Cruise with Your Vapes?

Is smoking on cruise ships legal or not? We’re going to let you know what you can and cannot smoke on a cruise. Getting your facts straight before getting to the dock is the best way to avoid surprises.

We always want to encourage you to practice safety and know the rules of vaping. This will ensure that you, your family, and your environment remain safe. Get the most out of your upcoming cruise, and read on to see if your vape pen can tag along!

Smoking on Cruise Ships: What You Need to Know to Have A Great Trip…

All cruise lines will differ in how they handle smoking. It’s important to check in with guest services for information on policies. Most times, there are clear signs in staterooms or along bars.

It’s also important to be mindful of other guests. While we all want to vape at our leisure during vacation, it can be uncomfortable for others.

Carnival Cruise Line

For the Carnival cruise line, you can expect there to be a designated area for smoking. This would include vaping because all indoor smoking is prohibited. They do have casinos and cigar lounges which all for some indoor vaping.

That means you can’t smoke in your stateroom or on the veranda. Housekeeping checks the room every night as they service your beds and baths. Hints of vaping or smoking will then lead to a hefty fine.

Oceania Cruise Line

Like the Carnival, Oceania allows smoking and vaping only in certain locations. This spot is, for the most part, found at the top deck near a bar. Again, check in with guest services for directions, or start by checking the pool area.

Oceania’s staterooms are smoke-free, and they always have a smoking/vaping fee. Unlike Carnival, Oceania doesn’t have any indoor smoking.

Nicotine and Batteries: Staying Safe

The most important thing to know about vaping is that it contains nicotine. Nicotine is addictive and can lead to health problems or worsen pre-existing ones. Be mindful and conscious of your vaping habits to ensure safe, responsible use.

Being on vacation can make you more comfortable with taking an unusually higher dose. Symptoms of nicotine overdose include:

  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Vomiting
  • Shaking
  • Heart palpitations

Be aware of how much you smoke, especially while on a cruise where you might have alcohol. Practice safety and never mix any medicines without consulting a medical professional. Another safety note is to have a working vaping battery for your trip!

Buy new accessories so you’re set to vape for the duration of your trip. Make sure to store your vape in a travel case.

Can You Smoke on a Cruise Ship?

Smoking on cruise ships or vaping depends on the ship you chose. Most ships offer designated areas for safe smoking. Never light up in a stateroom without checking the policy!

Avoid any uncomfortable confrontations by being mindful of other guests and children. If you have more questions about where you can and can’t vape, check out our blog for everything on safe vaping!

Teaching English Abroad: What Qualifications Do You Need?

Teaching English Abroad: What Qualifications Do You Need?

teaching Engligh abroad

About 1.5 billion people across the world are currently learning English. That opens up a lot of potential jobs for those who want to pursue a career in teaching English abroad.

The prospect definitely sounds alluring. You get to experience living in a completely new country and enrich the lives of children and adults as they strive to master their English skills.

But what exactly does it take to teach English abroad? Do you need a degree in teaching or classroom experience?

Hold on tight as we dive into what qualifications are necessary to teach English as a foreign language.

Native English Speaker

English is quickly becoming the language spoken amongst international businesses. Many foreigners strive for English fluency, so they can get promotions at work and communicate flawlessly with clients from around the world.

Part of excelling in any language is having the accent down, leading many language schools to require teachers to be native English speakers. Some even go as far as to require teachers to have a specific accent, like American or British.

Native English speakers also understand various slang words, or how the perceived meaning of a word can vary based on inflection or usage. This is something that even the most advanced non-native speaker may struggle to understand themselves.

This qualification is popular among many major countries in Asia, including China, South Korea, and Japan. However, many European, Southeast Asian, and South American countries are not as strict.

College Degree

What degree you’ll need, or if you’ll need a degree at all, vastly differs depending on which region you wish to teach in.

Many European countries and the major Asian countries (China, Japan, and South Korea) will want a bachelor’s degree. This doesn’t have to be in teaching or English, though. Many schools will accept any bachelor’s degree.

Southeast Asia and South America often don’t require a degree at all. However, some may require an associate degree or show preference to those with a degree.

The Middle East can be the hardest region to get into as many schools require a master’s degree. They may also require prior experience.

TEFL Certification

TEFL stands for Teaching English as a Foreign Language. This certification is by far the most valuable tool in your arsenal. You’ll learn teaching techniques, how to create lesson plans, and how to deal with the communication barriers in the classroom.

The majority of schools will require a TEFL certification, no matter what region they’re located in. However, it is possible to volunteer in countries like Africa without a certification.

Most schools don’t require prior experience, but you may need this in order to teach abroad without a TEFL certification. You could find work through an online school or become a freelancer in order to build up your portfolio. However, it’s generally much easier to find work abroad with certification under your belt.

Teaching English Abroad

Teaching English abroad is a great career option for anyone who wants to see the world or make a difference. With a TEFL certification in hand, you’ll be able to teach English in Southeast Asia and South America. Add a bachelor’s degree and being a native English speaker on top of that, and your options are seemingly limitless.

Do you have all the qualifications you need? Then check out our job board to find the perfect position today.

Iran Shoots Down U.S. Spy Drone; CENTCOM Says It Was In International Airspace

Updated at 7: 30 a.m. ET Iran’s Revolutionary Guard announced Thursday that it had shot down a U.S. drone over its territory to send “a clear message” to America, but a U.S. official tells NPR that the targeted unmanned aircraft was operating in international airspace. Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps said Thursday that it downed an RQ-4 Global Hawk surveillance drone that had entered Iranian airspace around Kouhmobarak district in country’s south, near the Gulf of Oman. “Iranian reports that the aircraft was over Iran are false,” U.S. Central Command spokesman Navy Capt. Bill Urban said Thursday. “This was an unprovoked attack on a U.S. surveillance asset in international airspace.” Gen. Hossein Salami, the IRGC commander, was quoted by The Associated Press as saying Iran does “not have any intention for war with any country, but we are ready for war.” U.S. Central Command says Iran used a surface-to-air missile system to shoot down the U.S. Navy Broad Area Maritime

Vape pen explosion shatters Nevada boy’s jaw, breaks his teeth

Warning: This article contains a photo some may find graphic

NEVADA – The 17-year-old traveled 250 miles with a bloody mouth, broken teeth and a hole in his jaw, trekking from a small town in Nevada to a pediatric hospital in Utah with his mother. There, doctors rushed him into surgery, working to reconstruct and repair shattered bone.

What he told doctors shocked them: The boy was vaping when, without warning, his e-cigarette exploded in his face. The freak accident, described in a case study published Wednesday, is just one of thousands in recent years.

“People need to know before they buy these devices that there’s a possibility they’re going to blow up in your pocket, in your face,” said Dr. Katie Russell, the trauma medical director at Primary Children’s Hospital who first treated the boy.

It’s unclear what type of e-cigarette was involved in the incident.

Thousands of explosions and fires

One study published in 2018 estimated that more than 2,000 e-cigarette explosion and burn injuries sent users to US hospital emergency departments from 2015 to 2017. But few are aware of just how serious the incidents can be.

The teen from Nevada said he had no idea his vape could explode, according to Russell. He repeated the line over and over again in the emergency room, she remembers, and he was still “pretty freaked out” hours after the explosion.

“At that time, in my career, I had never seen this. I never heard of this as a possibility” said Russell, who described the boy’s injuries in the New England Journal of Medicine.

“I just wanted to get this out there so other people could know that this was possible,” she added.

The boy Russell treated was “a tough kid,” she said, and he healed well. But others have been less fortunate.

Two dead, others injured in e-cig explosions

In February, a Texas man died after his e-cigarette exploded and shrapnel tore through his carotid artery. Part of the device remained lodged in the man’s throat at the hospital, according to his family.

About a year ago, a Florida man was also found dead after his e-cigarette exploded during use, sending a projectile into his head. Both cases involved “mechanical mods,” larger vaporizers that have more powerful batteries than many typical devices.

Both deaths were in adults, but numerous teenagers have reported burns from similar e-cigarette explosions. The injuries have mounted as experts warn of an “epidemic” of teen vaping, with almost 40% of 12th-graders using the devices, according to a report released last year.

One teen in Oregon nearly lost his eye when his vape exploded two years ago, according to CNN affiliate KYTV. Another 17-year-old told CNN affiliate KNXV in 2016 that “it was like [a] bomb going off” before her clothes caught on fire and an e-cigarette explosion left her with burns across her chest, arms and hands.

In one case from 2017, a 14-year-old girl was burned when an e-cigarette exploded in a nearby college student’s pocket while she was on a Harry Potter ride at Universal Studios. A year earlier, another 14-year-old was blinded after an e-cigarette exploded in a Brooklyn mall, according to CNN affiliate WPIX.

‘Blast injuries’ and skin grafts

While experts and advocacy groups have long raised questions about the health effects of vaping, the risk of explosions and fires has received less attention. Some researchers, though, have sounded alarms.

The boy healed well after six weeks and two surgeries, although he still hasn’t received implants for his missing teeth. (Dr. Micah Katz & Dr. Katie Russell/NEJM)

In a 2016 letter published in the New England Journal of Medicine, doctors at the University of Washington Medical Center described 15 patients who had suffered from e-cigarette explosions in less than a year.

Most accidents involved flame burns, and almost 30% of patients endured “blast injuries” that led to “tooth loss, traumatic tattooing, and extensive loss of soft tissue.” The flame burns required wound care and skin grafts, the doctors wrote.

They added that “e-cigarettes remain largely unregulated” and warned that although “these incidents were previously thought to be isolated events, the injuries among our 15 patients add to growing evidence that e-cigarettes are a public safety concern that demands increased regulation as well as design changes to improve safety.”

FDA ‘concerned’ but doesn’t mandate e-cig recalls

Industry groups remain wary of regulation, arguing instead that manufacturers need the freedom to easily make changes to — and improve — their products. “We need to make sure that we’re not going to be regulated out of business,” said Ray Story, the founder of the Tobacco Vapor Electronic Cigarette Association.

“The industry can always do more,” Story said, but he blamed consumers for some of the accidents. While batteries may explode, he said, “a lot of that happens because of the failure of the consumer to actually charge those batteries properly.”

Last year, R.J. Reynolds Vapor Company initiated a voluntary recall of 2.6 million power units for fire risk, but the FDA — which has regulatory jurisdiction over e-cigarettes — has not mandated any e-cigarette recalls in response to the recent explosions.

The agency said in a statement that it was “concerned” about “overheating and exploding batteries.” It recommended that consumers consider “using devices with safety features, preventing loose batteries from contact with metal objects, using the correct charger and not charging [a] battery overnight or [leaving] it charging unattended.”

The FDA also launched a website titled “Tips to Help Avoid ‘Vape’ Battery Explosions,” but Russell, who treated the Nevada teenager, believes many users aren’t even aware that e-cigarettes can explode — meaning they don’t seek out resources on battery safety.

“A pack of cigarettes says this can kill you,” Russell said. While e-cigarettes warn that nicotine is addictive, they seem to offer little information on battery risk, she said.

The safest option, according to Russell, may be to avoid vaping altogether. “The mom actually used one of these devices too,” she said. “After this, they all stopped.”

56 people suffer respiratory symptoms after chemical spill in Salt Lake City prompts hazmat response

SALT LAKE CITY — Hazmat crews responded to a chemical facility in Salt Lake City after up to 1,000 pounds of product was spilled, leaving a total of 56 potentially exposed patients.

Officials said the spilled product is sulfur dioxide, which can cause respiratory symptoms at high concentrations. 

Eight patients were transported to a local hospital for treatment but have been released, according to Intermountain Healthcare Media Relations Manager Erin Goff.

Some patients were at the facility where the spill occurred, Thatcher Chemical near 1910 West 1230 South, and others were at nearby locations.

Ryan Mellor, a Division Chief with Salt Lake City Fire, said two rail cars bumped into each other, which caused some hoses to tear and product to spill.

Authorities became aware of the spill around 8:40 a.m. after several reports of an odd smell with accompanying respiratory symptoms.

“We were able to trace it down here to here at Thatcher Chemical, where initial reports say there were about 1,000 pounds of a product that was spilled from a rail car,” Mellor said.

Mellor said there are several patients being treated for “respiratory symptoms” in connection with the spill. He said as the wind changes others in the area may experience symptoms and he encouraged people to avoid the area near Fortune Road and Wallace Road.

The leak has been stopped but the product spilled on the ground has not yet been contained. Mellor said between 400 and 1,000 pounds were spilled.

“The incident shouldn’t be getting bigger because the spill has been contained, but now comes the hard part—now comes the work,” Mellor said.

Exclusive: U.S. tells India it is mulling caps on H-1B visas to deter data rules – sources

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – The United States has told India it is considering caps on H-1B work visas for nations that force foreign companies to store data locally, three sources with knowledge of the matter told Reuters, widening the two countries’ row over tariffs and trade. FILE PHOTO: A man holds the flags of India and the U.S. while people take part in the 35th India Day Parade in New York August 16, 2015. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz/File Photo The plan to restrict the popular H-1B visa program, under which skilled foreign workers are brought to the United States each year, comes

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Utah man says woman broke in to pet his dogs, got a drink and made herself at home

NORTH SALT LAKE, Utah – A Utah man came in from a long night to find an unexpected visitor had made herself at home inside of his apartment.

It’s probably not what you would expect to see when you walk into your own home, a stranger staring back at you.

“I walked straight in and she was standing right here on the counter just looking at me,” said Ryan Spurlock as he opened his apartment door and looked to the island in the kitchen.

“I was looking right at her and a homeless girl was just looking right at me,” he continued.

That was the first thing Spurlock saw when he got back to his North Salt Lake apartment around 4 o’clock on Wednesday morning.

“It felt like a dream, honestly. Even when I laid down, it didn’t feel real,” Spurlock said.

The woman had placed her shoes neatly by the door and made herself at home.

“She went in my fridge, she opened a drink and she drank it, she sat on my couch,” said Spurlock.

“She told me she lives here, I said, ‘No you don’t, this is my place,’” he added.

Spurlock said the woman was even wearing his new clothes, “I noticed the bag was there and she was wearing them too,” he said as he picked up the empty shopping bag from the counter.

Spurlock said the situation was confusing, he wasn’t sure if the woman was homeless, if she lived in the building, if she was on drugs or who she was. He didn’t know what to do, so he offered her some food as he began to question her.

“What are you doing? Where are you from? She wouldn’t tell me her name, she started laughing and I thought she was on drugs,” he said.

After his quick interrogation, Spurlock learned the intruder didn’t come for a beer or the couch… she came for his dogs.

“She came up here for one reason and it was the two dogs, she heard them, and she wanted to come up,” Spurlock said.

The woman did not harm his dogs but came up to pet them, even claiming to Spurlock she was their owner. Then his encounter with the stranger got stranger.

“She asked if she could stay and I told her no you’ve got to leave or I’m going to call the police,” Spurlock said, mentioning he would not call the police so long as he could check her bag to ensure she did not steal anything.

The woman left, however, she didn’t use the front door and Spurlock doesn’t live on the first floor.

“She just climbed right up here, and she just jumped from here down, she started limping off and then she was fine and started running,” he said.

“I called the cops and chased after her on the other side of the gas station,” he said pointing around the corner.

Police caught up with the woman at the gas station, but according to a video Spurlock recorded on his cell phone, they couldn’t get a straight answer either.

“Sit your a– down,” the officer said as the woman, who was sitting on the curb, tried to get up while he was asking her questions.

“This isn’t a joke. Are you on any drugs right now?” the officer asked, the woman shook her head, ‘no.’

“Are you sure?” he said, and the woman nodded. “What are you doing in this complex?” the officer asked just before the video ended.

Once she was in police custody, Spurlock said the officers found his clothes and another man’s wallet in her possession.

Spurlock does not know how the woman got inside his apartment but said he learned a valuable lesson about making sure the door is locked.

State senator plans to sponsor bill outlawing ‘all elective abortions’ in Utah

SALT LAKE CITY — State Sen. Dan McCay, R-Riverton, announced at a rally on Wednesday he will sponsor a bill banning almost all abortions in Utah.

The bill planned for the 2020 general legislative session might have a triggering mechanism so that it would go into effect if the Supreme Court allows a similar law in another state.

“The idea that we are still involved in this barbaric practice to me is shocking,” McCay said.

The bill would ban all “elective” abortions in Utah.

According to “Abortion Free Utah,” the group that organized the Wednesday rally at the State Capitol, elective abortions include all abortions except those necessary to save the life of the mother.

The group’s chair, Merrilee Boyack, said they plan to support anti-abortion laws while at the same time trying to put Planned Parenthood of Utah out of business.

“We are inviting Planned Parenthood of Utah to leave the state of Utah,” Boyack said.

Planned Parenthood of Utah President Karrie Galloway released this statement:

“At Planned Parenthood, we believe every person deserves the right to live their best life and plan their families how they choose. We believe access to affordable health care and comprehensive sex education allows people to create healthy families. We believe that politicians have no place in health care decisions, and that access to safe, legal abortion should be protected.”

McCay’s plans for a triggering mechanism would save Utah from a court battle, which will likely be fought by Alabama, a state that has already passed a similarly restrictive bill.

Almost $5,000 worth of guns stolen from Roy storage unit

ROY, Utah — More than half a dozen guns are likely in the wrong hands tonight after they were stolen from a storage unit in Roy.

While their home is being built, Cody Darling and his wife are renting a storage unit in West Roy.

“I went to drop my other stuff off and I noticed all my guns that were lined up right here were just gone,” Darling said.

Seven firearms were found stolen Monday, just days after they were stored. The weapons include shotguns, rifles and pellet guns. A snowboard was also taken, according to Darling.

“I could care less about anything else,” Darling said. “It’s the guns I get from my family. I use them for hunting and that, too, you know? It’s something that means more to me than half the crap that’s in here.”

It’s not uncommon for guns to disappear from storage units, according to Roy City Police Sgt. Matthew Gwynn.

“These are crimes of opportunity, so don’t give them an opportunity,” Gwynn said.

Even though storage units might appear secure, Gwynn they are a prime target for criminals.

“The danger is that you don’t know what the intent is of the person who stole it,” Gwynn said.

Darling only had the serial numbers of two weapons, which police said is common for missing firearms. Officers can’t record the guns as stolen in their national database without them.

“It was like $4,800 in value on those guns that are gone,” Darling said. “It’s frustrating.”

Darling said he’s concerned a crime will be committed with his guns. He plans to find a new place to store his things.

Police say it is best to store firearms in a locked safe, whether that’s in a home or a storage unit.

‘Blitz on Blight’ Program Underway in Des Moines

DES MOINES, Iowa — Blighted homes are an eyesore — they can bring about pests like rats, and they can drive your property value down. Now that the city of Des Moines has an infusion of money from the local option sales tax, it is able to do much more about blighted properties.

“We’ve had a backlog of public nuisance structures to remove, up to 200. Some of them have been on the list for 10 years. With the local option sales tax money, we get to go back, take those that were on the list the longest, work our way through the list and then hopefully we keep up with the demos going forward which I think is really important to neighborhoods,” said SuAnn Donovan, Neighborhood Zoning and Inspections Administrator.

The local option sales tax injected the program with $600,000 right off the bat. The next home to go down is at 1155 Enos. The demolition is scheduled for July 15. The city plans to continue taking down homes throughout the year. Also on the list includes the homes at:

  • 5708 SW 2nd Street
  • 1937 Courtland Ave.
  • 3130  6th Ave.
  • 1552 E. 36th Street

Those who live by the house at 1552 East 36th say it can’t come fast enough. The home has been vacant for a while.

“You’re looking at four years plus. There were a couple of people that looked on buying it but to build on that lot, the back due taxes were crazy. Good, knock it down, let’s do something with it” said Chris Wood.

Residents nearby say the vacant home brings down the entire street.

“We all try to take care of our homes we try to keep them nice, and it’s just a nice little neighborhood. It’d be nice to get somebody in there like Habitat [for Humanity] or somebody that’s going to build a decent house and make a home for somebody,” said Steve Okones.

The city says this program will continue for years to come, as it can take up to 18 months to go through the legal process of adding a new home to the list and tearing it down.

The plan is for home builders to buy the land and build new homes to replace the blighted ones.