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Laundry pods and child poisonings

The journal Pediatrics recently published a study about how dangerous laundry pods are for young children. In 2013 and 2014, over 37,000 calls were received by poison control centers about the laundry pods.

The author of the study, who is Nationwide Children's Hospital's direct of the Center for Injury Research and Policy issued a statement that said, "Unless this unacceptably high number of exposures declines dramatically, manufacturers need to continue to find ways to make this product and its packaging safer for children." The results of the research found that two deaths and at least 24 life-threatening poisonings occurred during the two-year period that was analyzed in the study. The study occurred before many U.S. manufacturers took steps to improve the safety of the packaging for laundry pads.

Some of those steps included adding more warning labels, making sure children could see through the containers and adding closures for the containers that are child-resistant. The outside of the pods are now covered in a coating that tastes awful in order to deter a child from consuming the soap and other cleaning agents inside.

Through March of 2016, the volume of poison control calls dealing with laundry pods was 2,840. This equates to about 940 calls each month. Should that rate continue, it would be less than last year's total rate of 12,584 calls.

The maker of Gain and Tide has targeted parents with an ad campaign to make them more aware of the dangers of laundry pods to children. Too many parents store the pods on top of their washer or dryer. The efforts of manufacturers are appreciated, but there are still poisoning incidents occurring, according to another author of the study. He is Nationwide Children's Hospital's director of the Central Ohio Poison Center.

Children who have been exposed to the laundry pods could suffer from respiratory arrest, pulmonary edema, cardiac arrest, coma or death.

If your child has been injured because of a poison, you may have cause to file a claim against the manufacturer. An experienced Texas attorney can provide more information.

Source: The Wall Street Journal, "Laundry Pods More Dangerous to Children Than Other Detergents, Study Finds," Sharon Terlep, April 25, 2016

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