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Procter and Gamble faces a number of product liability lawsuits over Tide Pods, alleging that the single-use laundry detergent packets caused severe and sometimes fatal poisoning injuries.
Since the laundry detergent packets were introduced in recent years, thousands of problems have been reported, often involving toddlers or young children chewing on the brightly colored Pods, which resemble candy or a teething toy.
One of the more recent complaints was filed in February, involving a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of Dennis Powers, who died last year after be was exposed to the concentrated laundry detergent.
According to a report by WCPO.com, Powers suffered from “diminished mental capacity,” which the family says made his incident with a Tide Pod similar to a child poisoning incident.
Another lawsuit, filed in November, represents about a dozen children who suffered poisoning incidents from Tide Pods . The children ranged in ages from six months to four years old.
According to allegations raised in the Tide Pod lawsuits, Procter and Gamble failed to adequately warn about the risk of poisoning incidents when ingested or exposed to the skin or eyes, and failed take reasonable steps to reduce the risk of injury for children or other consumers.
Laundry Pod Posioning Risks
Proctor & Gamble has faced criticism for marketing the single-load laundry detergent packs in bright colors that resemble infant teething toys, and for selling Tide Pods in packaging that resembles candy jars.
The American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC) has reported that more than 10,000 calls involving laundry pod ingestion problems are received nationwide involving children five and younger exposed to Tide Pods and other similar laundry detergent packs, such as All Mighty Pacs, Purex UltraPacks and others.
In 2012, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued warnings to alert the public about the risk of detergent packet injuries. The safety alert highlighted the poisoning risk the packets pose to children who are exposed to the product, and came after several other regulatory agencies and health experts raised concerns about the risks associated with the single-use detergent packets.
In response to substantial criticism over the brightly colored packaging Tide Pods are sold in, Proctor & Gamble did agree to make several changes to their product packages in 2013.
The manufacturer altered the containers to an opaque material, instead of a clear plastic, to deter children from seeing the brightly colored product and trying to get inside the container.
In addition to cases over Tide Pods, laundry detergent poisoning problems have also been reported in connection with similar products sold by other manufacturers, resulting in nausea, vomiting, loss of consciousness, respiratory problems, gastrointestinal damage and other injuries.