AG Madigan Takes on “Over-the-Counter Napalm”

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan on Wednesday called for a national recall on all fuel gels and a ban on their further sales.

"Essentially, these pourable fuel gels are over-the-counter napalm, and people... have been killed and terribly injured by them," said Madigan.

Ilana Mendoza was only two years old when a knocked over fire pot covered her in the burning gel. She has already undergone two painful skin grafts.

"When I saw her on fire I immediately grabbed her and put her down and laid on top of her. I suffered some burns also, but to see your child [like that] it's horrendous," said the girl's mother,

The difficulty extinguishing the gels is one of their biggest dangers, says the National Fire Prevention Agency. The "stop, drop and roll" method that's taught to young children will only spread the gel and the fire to whatever is touched.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission says there have been 37 reports of incidents nationwide, 23 of them resulting in burn injuries. Four of the cases are from Illinois.

"People wouldn't buy it if that's what they thought they were buying. Nobody would bring this danger into their home willingly or knowingly, and I think that's why it's really important we get it off the market," said Jeff Sipple, who received second-degree burns on his face and arms when a fire pot erupted near him.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission last month announced a voluntary recall of 460,000 bottles of pourable fuel gel manufactured by Napa Home and Garden. Madigan wants that recall extended to all similar products.

People who have gel fuels in their home should dispose of it properly, Madigan said.

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