Industry-Wide Pourable Gel Fuel Recall Issued After Burns, Deaths

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By: Staff Writers | Published: September 2nd, 2011

All pourable gel fuels are being recalled from the market after dozens of reports of burn injuries have resulted from splattering gel, including at least two deaths and numerous hospitalizations. 

The industry-wide pourable gel fuel recall was announced on September 1 by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). The CPSC decided to recall the gel fuels because the products have a tendency to ignite unexpectedly, usually when poured on firepots that consumers do not realize are still hot. The gel ignites in a flash fire and may splatter onto nearby victims.

Federal regulators say there have been 65 incidents reported, including two fatalities. Second and third degree burns that required hospitalization were suffered by at least 34 victims. Nearly half of the incidents were linked to gel fuel products made by Napa Home & Garden, whose NAPAfire and FIREGEL products were recalled in late June.

Now, nine other manufacturers have agreed to pull their gel fuels from the market. The gel fuel recall affects products sold by Bird Brain Inc., Bond Manufacturing, Sunjel Company (2 Burn Inc.), Fuel Barons Inc., Lamplight Farms Inc., Luminosities Inc., Pacific Décor Ltd., Real Flame and Smart Solar Inc.

The pourable gel fuels were sold in one-quart plastic bottles and one-gallon plastic jugs in both scented and non-scented formulas since 2008 for between $5 and $20. The recall is expected to affect about 2 million units sold nationwide.

The CPSC is urging retailers to stop selling pourable gel fuel immediately and remove it from their shelves. Consumers are urged to stop using the gels and are warned against trying to rig homemade remedies for the bottles or replacing the gel with other fuels. Some companies are attempting to design caps for pourable gel fuel bottles that would prevent flash fire risks, the CPSC noted.

Consumers with pourable gel fuels by any of the companies listed in the recall can contact those companies for a full refund. A list of links to those companies’ websites is included in the CPSC recall notice.

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