Cryofreeze, Arctic Zone Gel Pack Recall Expanded Due to Ingestion Fears

About 880,000 freezer packs sold under the Cryofreeze and Arctic Zone brand names have been recalled, due to a risk that they may leak the gel contained inside and cause severe illness if ingested.

The ice gel pack recall was posted by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) on June 7, representing an expansion of a prior recall issued earlier this year for about 300,000 of the packs sold with lunch boxes and food carriers.

According to the U.S. CPSC, the freezer gel packs, which were manufactured in China and imported by California Innovations, Inc., may leak gel if they become damaged. The gel inside the freezer packs contain diethylene glycol and ethylene glycol, which could cause illness if ingested in large amounts.

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When ethylene glycol metabolizes, common side effects include altered mental status and highly toxic blood levels resulting in hyperventilation and acidemia.

Although there have been no new reports of injuries or incidents, the previous recall was issued after the importer received at least two separate reports of dogs chewing on the packs and ingesting the gel from the pack. One of the dogs died after ingesting the gel, and the other recovered after receiving medical treatment.

The recalled products include ice/hot packs produced under the Cryofreeze or Arctic Zone labels.  Specifically, units recalled involve the following packs distributed between July 2007 and December 2008:

  • Cryofreeze ice/hot packs in small and large styles.Both have opaque blue wrappers with the words “Cryofreeze,” “Ice Pack/Hot Pack,” “Non-toxic” and “Reusable” printed on the front:
    • The small gel pack is 6 inches wide and 5.5 inches high
    • The large gel pack is 8.5 inches wide and 8 inches high
  • Cryofreeze Transparent Cell ice/hot packs in three styles.Each has a transparent wrapper with the words “Cryofreeze,” “Ice Pack/Hot Pack,” “Non-toxic” and “Reusable” printed on the front:
    • One 3-cell pack has three connected rectangular-shaped pouches of blue gel and is 7.85 inches wide and 5.5 inches high.
    • Another 3-cell pack has three connected square-shaped pouches of blue gel and is 7.6 inches wide and 3 inches high.
    • The 2-cell pack has two connected square-shaped pouches of blue gel and is 5 inches wide and 3 inches high.
  • Arctic Zone ice pack is 6.25 inches wide and 4 inches high and has an opaque blue wrapper. The Arctic Zone logo and a picture of an iceberg appear on the front of the wrapper. The words “ICE,” “Personal Ice Pack” and “Non-Toxic Leak Proof Gel” are also printed on the front of the wrapper.

The U.S. CPSC recommends that consumers immediately stop using the recalled freezer gel packs and contact their local waste disposal authority for instructions on disposing of them. California Innovations is offering $6 refunds for each large Cryofreeze gel pack and $5 for each of the other recalled packs.


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