Spray sunscreens are widely admired for their easy application for people on the go, especially those with small children. Though their convenience may put them in a category above traditional lotion sunscreens, sprays come with a significant safety risk. The Food and Drug Administration has found that many of these products contain flammable materials and have the potential to cause significant burns to consumers who wear them near open flames. To date, the FDA is aware of five separate instances where people have suffered burns while wearing spray sunscreen that were so severe that they required medical attention. All of these victims, according to the FDA, were exposed to some sort of open flame (lighting a cigarette, grilling, and contact with a candle) after the sunscreen had been applied.
One company, Energizer, has voluntarily recalled over 20 of its Banana Boat spray sunscreen products because of this safety concern. In their press release, Energizer stated that the delivery spray system dispenses more sunscreen compared to other similar products and does not dry as fast on the skin, and therefore increases the risk for the product to ignite should a consumer come into contact with a flame. Energizer is currently the only manufacturer who has voluntarily taken its products off the market however the FDA is warning consumers that many other spray sunscreen products contain flammable properties such as alcohols that could ignite if exposed to heat and flame.
According to the FDA, consumers should take the following safety precautions to prevent injury from sunscreen:
• When choosing a sunscreen, think about where you will be applying it. If you plan to be near an open flame, avoid products that have a flammability warning and choose a non-flammable sunscreen product. Be especially aware of what type of sunscreen you’re choosing for your child.
• While applying or wearing a sunscreen that is labeled “Flammable” avoid exposure to flames and do not apply these flammable products near an open flame; avoid lighting cigarettes, grilling, candles, or sparking materials.
Wearing sunscreen is vital to preventing sunburns and skin cancers, and the FDA recommends that everyone wear a sunscreen with SPF, no matter what his or her level of sun exposure is.
Products manufacturers are supposed to guarantee that their products are safe for consumption. When a manufacturer fails to guarantee this, and a consumer is injured while using their product, the consumer may be entitled for compensation for these injuries. Grounds for a Massachusetts products liability lawsuit include a flawed product design, manufacturing process errors, or marketing defects. Even when a product is manufactured correctly, a person can still be hurt and Massachusetts’s products liability law holds manufacturers and sellers strictly liable-even if they did not directly contribute to the injury.
If you believe you may have been injured after using a sunscreen, or another cosmetic product, call one of the experienced Boston Products Liability Attorneys at the law offices of Altman & Altman, to schedule your free initial consultation to discuss filing a potential products liability case. For nearly 50 years, our team of lawyers has represented clients who were seriously injured by defective products, and have recovered millions of dollars in personal injury settlements and verdicts. Our staff is available 24/7 and is always here to answer any questions you may have about your case.