By Bill Parry
Laundry detergent pods are dangerous, according to state Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas (D-Astoria).
Sirotas has proposed legislation to stem the tide of accidental poisonings of children by requiring manufacturers to change the design and color of laundry pods to make them less appealing to youngsters.
In 2014, there were over 11,000 reported cases of young children eating the colorful, small packages containing chemical detergents, according to the American Association of Poison Control Centers. Children who ingest detergent from the pods have experienced vomiting, chemical burns, respiratory problems, seizures, loss of consciousness, fluid in the lungs and even death.
“Dangerous and toxic substances should not be packaged to look like candy or toys,” Simotas said. “As a legislator and a mom, I am outraged that convenience and marketing have trumped consumer safety.”
In addition, the legislation makes warning labels and child-resistant packaging mandatory for all liquid-detergent packets sold in New York state. These agents currently are largely unregulated. Recommended industry safety standards for laundry pods were announced in September, but manufacturers are not required to follow them.
“Laundry detergent pods should be subject to the same safety measures and warning labels that consumers have come to expect on medicines, cleaning supplies and other household chemicals,” Simotas said. “Child resistant packaging, clearer warning labels, and a suitable new design are common sense measures that can save young lives.”
Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at bparr