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Fuel Gel in Firepots Have Killed 2, Injured 75

By Cynthia Hsu, Esq. on September 02, 2011 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

If you ever poured fuel gels into firepots to light up some of your patio decorations, you should stop. Firepot injuries have caused 75 injuries and two deaths.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission has now issued a voluntary recall of the gel fuels.

The recall covers around 2 million bottles and jugs of fuel gels from nine manufacturers and distributors, reports CNN.

The nine manufacturers involved also came to an agreement with the CPSC. They consented to the voluntary recall in exchange for the CPSC promising not to show videos made in the CPSC laboratory of the exploding flames.

Many of the accidents have occurred when consumers poured the fuel gels into already-lit firepots where the flames are difficult to see. The poured gel can result in the burning flames splashing upwards, causing injuries to the consumer, ABC News reports.

The flames caused by the burning gels can also be difficult to remove. Patting or smothering the flames won't work, and neither will splashing the flames with water. The flames can be extinguished using a dry chemical fire extinguisher, according to CNN.

It's possible that the manufacturers of these fuel gels may be legally liable for the injuries caused by their product if they did not adequately warn consumers of the dangers.

There may also be liability if the product is determined to be defective either in its design or in its manufacture.

Usually, anybody within the product's chain of distribution can be liable for the product's defect. So, the manufacturer, wholesaler, and retailer could all face liability if the product is found to be defective.

What should you do if you have one of these fuel gels and firepot lighting fixtures? For one, stop using them in order to prevent more firepot injuries. And, if you're looking for a refund for any of the fuel gels you've purchased, contact the appropriate company.

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