Southern California breaking news and trends

Chainsaws just got more dangerous: thousands rrrrrrrrrrrrecalled

STIHL chainsaw recall 2

Photo via U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission

Simply because the existing flywheel might possibly break apart and send parts flying into users and bystanders, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with STIHL Inc., announced Tuesday a voluntary recall of STIHL MS 391 gas-powered chain saws.

At this time, no incidents or injuries have been reported, however, consumers are directed to immediately stop using the recalled products and return them to an authorized STIHL dealer for installation of a free replacement flywheel.

This recall involves about 3000 units with an orange top casing, gray base and black front handle and hand guard. "STIHL" and "MS 391" are printed in an orange circle on the starter side of the unit, and the serial number is located on the crankcase to the right of the muffler when viewed from the rear of the saw.


Code orange: California citrus trees are under attack

orange tree grove

Cecilia Aros/ Flickr Creative Commons

An emergency situation is becoming increasingly critical as efforts expand by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) to control a bug that's threatening the more than $1 billion the state economy juices from the citrus industry.

Responsible for transmitting the deadly, incurable Huanglongbing disease to citrus-producing trees, the Asian Citrus Psyllid, though not inherently vengeful, is poised to carry out widespread destruction of the state's commercial citrus groves.

On Tuesday, the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution supporting the state's efforts to stop the spread of the insect, the SB Sun reports. The resolution allows the county's agricultural commissioner to require treatment of citrus trees located within 400 meters from where an insect is found.


LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to chair the Democratic National Convention

LA Mayor, And Americans Promoting Study Abroad Announce Major Beijing Concert To Benefit Study Abroad

Jerod Harris/Getty Images for BGR

File: Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and announce partnership with Americans Promoting Study Abroad and Major Beijing Concert to benefit Study Abroad at Mendez Learning Center on November 21, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has been chosen to chair this summer's Democratic National Convention, the L.A. Times reports. The position means he'll be a public spokesman for the convention, among other duties.

A formal announcement is scheduled Wednesday in Washington. Villaraigosa will join President Barack Obama that night for a fundraiser in L.A.

The Democratic Party plans to release a Web publicity video with Villaraigosa Wednesday, the L.A. Times reports, raising his national profile as a major Latino politician.

Villaraigosa endorsed Hillary Clinton in her 2008 presidential bid against Obama, serving as one of her national campaign chairmen. Once she dropped out, Villaraigosa switched his support to Obama.

The Democratic convention will take place in Charlotte, N.C., beginning Sept. 3. Obama is expected to be nominated as the Democratic presidential candidate.


Fun returns! Beach football, Frisbee ban/fine to be eliminated

Kids throwing footballs on the beach

Tony Pierce/KPCC

Kids throwing footballs on a beach

Dust off that Frisbee and head to the beach. The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors is doing an about-face, getting rid of some old rules that restricted football and Frisbee on the sand. The change comes after a misunderstanding about those rules went viral.

It’s a classic case of good intentions, bad results. Last week the supervisors tried to “relax” some of the rules that said you can’t toss a football on a crowded beach if it endangers public safety.

But a couple of media outlets got it wrong — they reported that a beach football game would now cost you a thousand dollar fine.

The reports went viral. And the outrage poured in.

So Tuesday, the supervisors met to see if they could clarify things, but supervisor Don Knabe took it further. He recommended ditching the rules altogether, since nobody’s been ticketed for a beach football or Frisbee offense in 40 years.