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December 29, 2007

"State Health Officials Fault Lack of Federal Action on Waterproofing Sprays"

A New York Times article by Eric Lipton says that "[t]he Consumer Product Safety Commission is unnecessarily leaving the American public at risk through its failure to properly investigate a long-running series of lung injuries tied to widely available waterproofing sprays," according to public health officials from several states.  The problem involves inexpensive water-repelling sprays sold nationwide that rely on a Teflon-like chemical, called a fluoropolymer, which, when inhaled, may cause lung inflammation, preventing a person from getting enough oxygen.  The problems it causes are typically not life threatening and there is no accurate count of the number of consumer who have been sickened because of the sprays.  The article notes "[t]he illnesses in recent years have been associated with a range of waterproofing products besides Kenyon Water Repellent, including Jobsite Heavy Duty Bootmate, Rocky Boot Weather and Stain Protector, and Stand ’n Seal grout sealer," and that "the Consumer Product Safety Commission has issued a recall on only one, Stand ’n Seal, which had been involved in the most severe injuries, including two deaths."  Two other products, "Jobsite and Rocky Boot, were removed from sale last year at the request of Michigan officials."  State officials have been critical of the lack of a federal response to the problem.

MKS

December 29, 2007 | Permalink

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