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Recall of the Week: Pourable gel fuels made by nine companies due to flash fire and burn hazards

Gel Fuels

By Rita R. Robison

All pourable gel fuels made or sold by nine companies are being recalled due to the risks of flash fire and burns when consumers add pourable gel to an already burning fire pot.

Consumers should immediately stop using the pourable gel fuel, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and nine manufacturers and distributors advise in a statement.

The recall involves about 2 million containers of pourable gel fuels packaged in one-quart plastic bottles and one-gallon plastic jugs. Sold since 2008 for $5 to $20, the scented and non-scented gel fuels were sold by these companies:

Consumers can contact the firms for instructions on obtaining a refund and returning unused bottles and jugs.

The pourable gel fuel can ignite unexpectedly and splatter onto people and objects nearby when it’s poured into a firepot that’s still burning.

The commission is aware of 65 incidents resulting in two deaths and 34 victims who were hospitalized with second and third degree burns of the face, chest, hands, arms, or legs. Of the 65 incidents, 28 of them, including 37 burn injuries and two fatalities, occurred with fuel gel products made by Napa Home & Garden, which conducted a recall, in cooperation with commission, of its products in June 2011.

Also in June, the commission issued a statement alerting consumers to the hazards of pourable gel fuels. All pourable gel fuel, regardless of manufacturer, poses flash fire hazards.

Consumers shouldn’t attempt to use or fix pourable gel fuel bottles with homemade remedies or replace the fuel with other flammable materials.

Copyright 2011, Rita R. Robison, Consumer Specialist


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