baby proofing

CDC Warns That Detergent Pods That Look Like Delicious Candy Are Not Delicious Candy

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I’m a big fan of those brand new detergent pods that look like delicious candy because they keep my kids from dumping half a gallon of liquid detergent in the washing machine when they do their laundry. I don’t have small kids at home, but when I did I never left household cleaners like laundry detergent anywhere they would be able to have access to them, but according to the CDC enough parents are leaving the new fangled detergent pods lying around that kids are eating them.

From ABC News:

There were 1,008 cases of detergent poisoning among kids during a 30-day period this summer, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report released Thursday. Of those reported cases, 486 were linked to pods. Poison centers across the country were seeing an average of 10 cases a day, the CDC reported in May.

Ninety-four percent of poisonings from laundry detergent are among kids younger than 6, according to the CDC report, and in these children, those who consumed pods were usually sicker than those who ingested other forms of laundry detergent.

The CDC says that exposure to the detergent pods is “an emerging public health hazard in the United States.”

The makers of Tide detergent – Proctor & Gamble – told ABC News in May they planned to unveil new childproof packaging by the summer. The new packaging features a double-latch lid and a larger warning label on the container that some critics say looks like a candy jar.

Proctor & Gamble has distributed the new containers but never recalled the old ones. ABC News visited four stores this week and found the old easy-to-open plastic containers on shelves.

Proctor & Gamble told ABC News that it is adding an over-the-lid resealable sticker that will “gradually be available as of December in stores.”

Consumers who would like to use the resealable sticker earlier can do so by calling 1-877-751-7227, beginning Nov. 1.

Parents should keep all household cleaning supplies including detergent pods out of reach of small children. This is childproofing 101. I do think that the containers do resemble a candy jar, and could easily confuse little ones. Especially when the container looks like it is filled with delicious, delicious candy. Maybe they could change the color of the detergent pods to something more unappetizing as well, they do look like dayglo starlight mints. Or else add a giant skull and crossbones to the container. Or maybe add a mascot that looks like Mr. Yuk, the cranky looking green guy that kept my generation safe from chewing on Brillo pads and swallowing kitchen knives.
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Parents, I urge you to keep these detergent pods away from your children. Not only for their own safety, but because if they take them off the market I will have to police my own children and teach them how to pour the correct amount of laundry detergent into the machine so I don’t end up with a laundry full of soap suds.