Banana Boat, the major sunscreen manufacturer, is issuing a massive recall on over 500,000 bottles of sunscreen. The products are spray on lotion in the UltraMist brand. There have been a number of incidents reported that people who have used the product have suddenly been caught on fire. Five people have been reportedly burnt from the resulting flames- four in the United States, and one in Canada.
The company states that the problem stems from the UltraMist’s spray valve. The product itself contains flammable substances that, once dry, are completely safe. The faulty valves deposit more product than recommended, heightening the flammability risk.
The product label warns users that the sunscreen should be kept away from ignition sources and not used around smoking individuals. The combustion of the material once on the skin is an extremely rare event. Darrel Rigel, professor of dermatology at New York University, says that, “I’ve been doing this for 30 years and I’ve never seen or heard of this happening before.” He then pointed out that the product is an aerosol, which includes ingredients such as alcohol. “I think you just have to use common sense and not be near an open fire when you put on aerosol anything.”
The results of the sunscreen catching on fire has massive consequences. In one case, a man stood by a barbecue and was burnt when applying sunscreen. In another case, a woman was burnt after using welding equipment after applying sunscreen. Both these individuals received second and third degree burns. A third degree burn destroys tissue down to the fat and muscle. It requires extensive rehabilitation and therapy to recover from a third degree burn.
This recall includes products such as the UltraMist Kids, UltraMist Ultra Defense, and UltraMist Sport. For more information on this recall, please contact Energizer Holdings at 1-800-SAFESUN.
Source: USA Today