Cycling a dangerous sport?

Almost in every race there are accidents. The cyclists fall due to slippery roads, mechanical failure, or a driving error. Or even in some cases because the follow car hits a cyclist. Most of the time these accidents aren’t too bad and in that case the cyclist can continue the race.

In the Tour the France there are several mountain stages, when the cyclists descend these steep mountains they can reach speeds up to 100 km/h. When a cyclist falls at these speeds this can be life threatening, it’s very dangerous. There are several examples of very severe accidents that happened in these kinds of stages.

As you can see in the picture below when you fall down at high speeds with a carbon bike, it shatters which can be very dangerous. It is possible to make the bicycles even lighter and faster, but at high speeds the bicycles should be stiff enough. If this isn’t the case it’s obvious that this can lead to very dangerous situations. That’s the reason why the UCI has strict regulations and every bike should be approved by the UCI before it can be used in official races.

The disadvantage of all these regulations is that it restricts the innovation and creativity for the bicycles manufactures. But thanks to these rules the cycling sport has become a bit less dangerous.

 

broken carbon bike

 

Durability

The hard times of today me never make us forget about the future. Durability is a very important goal for that matter. This is why Janssen Pharmaceutics created the Sustainability Council that is committed to promote a sustainability entrepreneurship. Every project has three different parts: an environmental part, a social part and, of course, an economic part. Not only does every project aims for these three goals, it aims to get in every division. In order to do so, every division is represented by a responsible, such as the IT-group, which can help to get the initiatives to the right persons. For already a long time, Janssen has been in the possession of solar panels and windmills, but a lot of people just do not know it. Another example is the reuse of the rinse water from the washing department, even up to three times! The large amount of plastic cups are even more durable than the reusable coffee mugs that have to be washed every time.

As a plan of action, the first step is to list everything that is already taken into account, such as the solar panels, windmills, recycling of rinsing water and the use of plastic cups. Secondly, these actions need to be clarified to the employees, and this is where we are now. The three musketeers are present in every alley and make the employees of Janssen aware of what is going on, and what they can do to help. It is important to know that every little step counts, and you have to begin with yourself. Only by taking responsibility for the present and future generations, will Janssen be able to maintain the strong role it is laying now.

To limit the ecological footprint, the use of water, energy and other raw materials need to be monitored. An important difficulty is that purification of water and waste treatment costs a lot of energy and money. So by limiting the amount of waste and water, it is not only advantageous for the environment, but it is also cheaper for the company and it decreases the health risks of the employees because they do not have to use dangerous solvents or diluents. Next to this economic part, the social part is very important as well. This is linked because by making profit, it is possible to make new drugs, new developments and get the drugs to the patients on time.

Bicycle theft

In this post I will give you a short resume of a remarkable event that has occur in recent protour races and my statement on this.

Recently there have been some cycling thefts in the protour peloton. First during the “Tour de Mediterranean”, 17 bikes were stolen from team Garmin-Sharp. Later during the “Driedaagse van De Panne-Koksijde” about 8 bikes were stolen from team Radioshack-Trek. Both thefts were done during the night out of the team truck, which is parked at the hotel were the riders stay. The value of both thefts were estimated at about 100 000-150 000 euros.  This is a new trend, cause I have never seen such thefts before, especially because they were done in a short period of time. There has been no link between the 2 thefts up to now, they consider it done by 2 different criminal gangs.

This raises the question if those trucks are protected enough, if the hotel parking’s are guarded well, etc. I think they are not, the team managers tell us they parked a car behind the truck so it is not possible to open the tailboard of the truck. But if you have a truck with 20 bikes of about 10 000 euros, I think you should put a sort alarm system on your truck. I have the feeling that they do not care a lot about their equipment because it’s sponsored (=free) anyway. If I had a bike of 10 000 euros, I would almost guard with my life. That’s the big problem here I think.

Afbeelding

This type of bikes were stolen out of the team truck of Radioshack-Trek.

(Misbehaving) Spectators

In this post I am going to describe the spectator’s aspect of the sport. The cycling sport is one of the few sports that are free to watch. It is available for everybody. In my opinion that’s one of the great aspects of the sport, you don’t have to pay a lot of money to go see you’re hero of the cycling sport.  Every year the tour the France attracts 12 to 15 million spectators, which gives you an idea how popular the Tour the France is. 70% of the spectators and 30% are women. Among these millions of spectators there are a lot of families with children.

It is nice for the cyclists that there are so many spectators cheering for them. But not all the spectators behave like they should. This is very disrespectful towards the cyclists, and it is a very bad example for the children.

There are some races in the Tour the France along very small paths and although it is very nice to see your favorite cyclist from close by, the spectators take so much room on these paths that it is almost impossible for the cyclist to pass. This creates a dangerous situation both for the cyclist and the spectator. Another example of spectators misbehaving in the Tour the France is by trying to attract the attention of the camera by disguising and running after the cyclists. This can be funny for the spectator and his friends but for the cyclist it is very annoying and distracting.

These are only a few examples of things that happen in the Tour the France. I would like to ask all the spectators to behave like they should, show a little respect for the cyclists and enjoy the sport!

For the people who don’t know what I’m talking about, here is a movie to illustrate the behavior of some spectators. The commentator is Jens Voight a professional cyclist.

source: http://www.letour.fr/2011/TDF/HISTO/us/statistiques.html

spectator trowing water on cyclist

 

Motilium

This is a post as a reaction to what has been on the news concerning the drug ‘Motilium’. The EMA (European Medicine Agency) has started an investigation to the drugs that consist of domperidone as an active substance. The most well-known drugs is Motilium, which is used to treat nausea, vomiting, a bloating feeling and an upset stomach. These drugs might have a connection to heart diseases, and the FAGG (‘Belgisch Federaal Agentschap voor Geneesmiddelen en Gezondheidsproducten’) or FAMHP (Federal Agency for Medicines and Health Products) has asked for this investigation.

 generic Motilium(Domperidone)

A  “Product Issue Management Team” has been established with the goal to work close with the European authorities to help the ongoing research as efficiently and minimal disturbance for patients, clients and healthcare professionals as possible. This makes it possible to maintain the daily affairs of Janssen EMEA. This team strives to have no secrets, and will communicate on time and consistent to all who need the information. Important to know, is that this intervention will take a few months, and if you take your drugs as prescribed in the information leaflet.

Johnson & Johnson Consumer NV, a division of the same group of American  companies that also include Janssen Pharmaceutics, still has faith in a positive benefit-risk ratio of the drug, and fully supports the European and Belgian producers of the drugs and will fully cooperate with the investigation.

Legal action against Johnson & Johnson

Johnson and Johnson (J&J) are aware of the problems concerning domperidone, and are already following this for several years and will be passed to the regulators. Since 2011, they are performing two studies in collaboration with the FAMHP. One of these studies was concerning a cardiovascular safety study, which has been completed and that will be published this year. The company has already announced that the results where reassuring. The second study is investigating the link between domperidone and the cardiovascular effects and will be finished at the end of this year. A last remark is that J&J want to make sure that drugs containing domperidone will have to require prescription. If this will be the case will be announced at the end of April.

Our next post will be an interview with an R&D expert who develops new time trial bikes. But before we interview him we want to give the followers of the blog a chance to post a question they want to ask the R&D expert.We will then try to ask these questions during the interview.

Move for Africa

Although this is a period of crisis and sometimes even devices get sabotaged by people who got fired, Janssen Pharmaceutics is still committed for development Cooperation’s where they want to help the population. A perfect example is ‘Move for Africa’ by La Libre Belgique, because they have the same vision as Janssen Pharmaceutics: making a durable and tangible difference for the world. Move for Africa is a Walloon organization that stands for awareness campaigns and this with the support of the Walloon Minister of Education. They try to promotion the development cooperation and humanitarian aid to Africa, especially to the students of the 5th grade of the secondary schools in Wallonia. During this Easter holydays, about hundreds to hundred and fifty students, or ten classes, will elaborate concrete development projects in different African countries. They will collect money, which will fully go to these projects.

Move for Africa

Doing this, makes young people aware that there are different aspects to development Cooperation’s. Janssen Pharmaceutis is one of the project promoters and partners, which want to learn the students, what their responsibility is as a citizen of the world, thereby stimulating them to cooperate to the development of a democratic society.

Janssen feels responsible for and involved in the future of the youth, thus it wants to sensitize them in order to make fully committed to work for a better world, the future of our children. Secondly, they want to make them enthusiast for a scientific career, since they are the generation that have to answer the challenges of today and tomorrow. Therefore it is highly appreciated when a student invests its time, talent and energy in a sustainable world and accordingly in projects such as Move for Africa.

For more information, be sure to visit the website of Move for Africa: http://moveforafrica.lalibre.be/