Billings residents who are pet owners or who carry their food in an insulated lunch box will be interested to hear of a company’s recent recall of two dangerous products: an insulated lunch box and thermal food carrier. The lunch box is expandable and holds a freezer gel pack, and the problem is that the defective product makes use of a gel containing diethylene and ethylene glycol, which are poisonous if ingested. The boxes were sold from May 2007 to September 2008.

According to a recent news report, the products manufacturer has received two reports of incidents involving the damaged gel packs. In both incidents, a dog chewed the gel pack exposing the gel. After digesting the contents of the gel pack, one dog reportedly died, and the other dog received medical treatment and ultimately survived. No reports of human injury have been released.

The recalled thermal food carrier is a four-piece product sold by the same company — California Innovations — between August 2008 and December 2011. The product was available at Wal-Mart and included a freezer gel pack containing the same hazardous chemicals. Unlike the insulated lunch box, there have been no reports of any incidents involving the thermal food carrier gel pack.

So far only one dog has died from ingesting the dangerous product. Although there have been no reports of any humans harmed, the gel packs still pose a serious threat to human health. If Montana parents and workers use lunch boxes or food carriers, they will want to check the manufacturer of the box to ensure their own safety, as well as the safety of children and pets.

Source: The Washington Post, “Product recall: Insulated lunch boxes, thermal food carriers,” Jan. 23, 2012