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POSTED December 17, 2012 9:35 p.m.

AUSTRALIAN COURT: WORKER'S COMP COVERS SEX MISHAP: CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — An Australian court has ruled that a bureaucrat who was injured while having sex on a business trip is eligible for worker's compensation benefits.

The Full Bench of the Federal Court ruled Dec. 13 in favor of the woman, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, and rejecting the appeal of the federal government's insurer.

The woman was hospitalized after being injured in 2007 during sex with a male friend while staying in a motel in the town of Nowra, 160 kilometers (100 miles) south of her hometown of Sydney.

During the sex, a glass light fitting was torn from its mount above the bed and landed on her face, injuring her nose and mouth. She later suffered depression and was unable to continue working for the government.

Her claim for worker's compensation for her physical and psychological injuries was initially approved by government insurer Comcare, then rejected after further investigation.

An administrative tribunal agreed with Comcare that her injuries were not suffered in the course of her employment, saying the government had not induced or encouraged the woman's sexual conduct. The tribunal also found the sex was "not an ordinary incident of an overnight stay" such as showering, sleeping and eating.

That ruling was overturned in the Federal Court in 2012, when Judge John Nicholas rejected the tribunal's findings that the sex had to be condoned by the government if she were to qualify for compensation.

HOUSTON ZOO CHEETAHS GET WORKOUT AT HORSE TRACK: HOUSTON (AP) — Two cheetahs from the Houston Zoo usually confined to cages have been allowed to run through part of a horse track when the regular racers weren't around.

The 5-year-old male siblings name Kito and Kiburi were allowed to roam this month at a grassy fenced part of Sam Houston Race Park in Houston.

The Houston Chronicle  reported Sunday that the zoo officials, starting in August, took the big cats to the park twice on leashes. Curator Beth Schaefer says the cheetahs were calm and with their regular trainers.

The cheetahs in early November were allowed off their leashes at the race park, with no problems. The second off-leash excursion was Dec. 11 but will be the last for a while.

JOB AND A PARTY AS HOSPITAL HIRES 1,000TH EMPLOYEE: GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — Cake, applause, a red carpet — not a typical first day at work.

Well, it turns out that Ashley Wharton isn't your typical physician's assistant. A Grand Rapids hospital celebrated her arrival Monday because she's the 1,000th employee.

Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital has added 267 workers since summer 2011, a 36 percent increase, after deciding to remain independent and not merge with another hospital.

Wharton was a bit overwhelmed by all the fuss. She will work in the admissions department, evaluating new patients and helping others leave the hospital.

 

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