As soon as January 2016, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will begin implementing the final phase of the so-called REAL ID Act, which sets standards for state-issued driver's licenses and identification cards acceptable by federal agencies for official purposes. Under the final phase, which will begin "no sooner than 2016," residents of "non-compliant" states will no longer be allowed to present state-issued driver's licenses as identification for air travel, but instead will be required to present "alternative forms of identification – such as a U.S. Passport." As of today, the non-compliant jurisdictions are: American Samoa, Louisiana, Minnesota, New Hampshire and New York. It is up to those states, working with the federal government, to come up with a solution to this problem.
Implementation of REAL ID has been repeatedly delayed over the past 10 years to provide additional time for states to comply, and it is possible that further extensions could be granted. DHS has promised that before this final phase is implemented, it "will conduct an evaluation to...more
Laura Landro | Wall Street Journal
As more travelers seek out adventure at high elevations, altitude sickness is an often overlooked risk.
At popular destinations far above sea level, from the peaks of Nepal and the Pacific Crest Trail to the tourist attractions of Peru, the air gets thinner the higher you ascend. People often experience headaches, dizziness, and fatigue from a condition called acute mountain sickness before their bodies eventually adapt to lower oxygen levels in the blood. Untreated, it can progress to a potentially fatal swelling of the brain. And when people ascend in altitude too quickly, they can suffer a swelling of the lungs that can also lead to death.
Researchers are still uncovering some of the mysteries of altitude-related health problems. Genetic factors seem to make some people less susceptible to altitude sickness. People over 50 have a slightly lower risk, perhaps because the brain shrinks slightly as it ages. Men and women seem to be equally at risk, although symptoms might be more severe in men. And, interestingly, people’s fitness levels seem to have little to do with...more
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