News you can lose: Bad driving makes woman an official idiot

How a woman paid dearly for driving on the pavement, and other quirky stories from around the world.

As part of a her punishment for driving on the pavement, a woman has been ordered to stand at a busy road junction wearing a sign identifying her as "an idiot".

Shena Hardin, 32, had attempted to get around a school bus that had stopped to unload children by steering her car up on the pavement.

A judge in Cleveland, US, ordered Hardin to spend one hour for seven days wearing a sign that reads "only an idiot drives on the pavement to avoid a school bus". The court also suspended her licence for 30 days and fined her US$250 (Dh918).


Eat Kazakhstani yogurt for a long, long life

An "elixir of life" developed from yogurt in Kazakhstan could actually work.

British scientists have tested the substance, called "nar", and say it is a promising field of research. Nar was invented on the orders of the president of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev, after he established Nazarbayev University in 2009. Now 72, President Nazarbayev has ruled the country since 1990 and is said to be interested in longevity. He told the country's People's Assemby in 2010: "I'm willing to go on until 2020. Just find me an elixir."

Roger Highfield, the director of external affairs at the Science Museum in London, said the Kazakhs were "on to something", adding microbial cultures could help with everything from diabetes to heart attacks.


Internal discord breaks up music duo Civil Wars

An award-winning country music duo called The Civil Wars have announced that they are splitting up due to "internal discord".

Joy Williams and John Paul White have cancelled a tour to Europe after revealing "irreconcilable differences of ambition". The duo won two Grammy awards last year.


Elephants wet their whistles then go crazy

After discovering a stash of moonshine alcohol, a herd of Indian elephants went on the rampage, destroying houses and ruining crops.

Police say up to 50 migrating elephants became unruly after drinking around 500 litres of moonshine in Dumurkota in eastern India.

Officer Asish Samanat said the elephants were "like any other drunk. Aggressive and unreasonable but much bigger". The elephants were eventually driven to a nearby river to sober up before continuing their journey.


On a plane? Don't bother to buckle up

Seat belts on planes are a waste of time because in a crash everyone would be killed, a budget airline boss has claimed.Michael O'Leary, who is the chief executive of Ryan Air, has dismissed the idea that seat belts are essential, saying that they "don't really matter".

He added: "You don't need a seat belt on the London Underground. You don't need a seat belt on trains that are travelling at 120mph. If they crash you're all dead."

O'Leary is currently trying to persuade regulators to allow him to remove the last 10 rows of seats so that he can offer standing room only on some of his routes. He insists the plan is safe and that when landing passengers could "hang on to the handle".

Published: November 9, 2012 04:00 AM


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