What's at Stake? Science and Safety

As the US government shutdown stretches into week 3, food safety, hurricane preparedness and scientific infrastructure are working well below capacity—compromising American's safety.

From the FDA to the Federal Aviation Administration, 800,000 federal employees are furloughed or working without pay, the Washington Post reported.

The FDA has halted routine inspections of domestic food processing facilities, the Washington Post reported.

The shutdown, which President Trump says could last “months or even years,” means scientists are missing data sets as well as paychecks. USDA studies of antibiotic-resistant bacteria have been stopped.

The timing is particularly bad for the National Weather Service. The agency is missing a key preparedness window before the storms start in the summer. If the shutdown continues, routine training for emergency managers “just isn’t going to happen,” the NWS' Eric Blake told Scientific American.

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