Consumer Reports warns against using laundry pod bucket as Halloween basket

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- It looks like a simple and fun family craft project but Consumer Reports warns it could be sending a toxic message to kids.

Some YouTube videos show easy ways to turn laundry pod containers into trick or treating baskets.

It looks great. But Consumer Reports' Dan DiClerico says teaching children to associate laundry pod containers with candy could be dangerous.

"Since 2012, thousands of children have been injured or sickened after ingesting or coming into contact with laundry pods," he said.

The pods can look like candy and curious kids can bite into them. The highly concentrated detergent can cause anything from minor skin and eye irritations to more serious reactions like wheezing, gagging, drooling as well as severe vomiting and diarrhea.

Consumer Reports called for changes to laundry pad containers and was also part of the industry committee that set new safety standards.

For example, moving packaging from clear to opaque containers that now come with a safety latch.

"Other planned modifications include making the pods stronger so they're less likely to burst inside a child's mouth and adding a bitter-tasting substance so that children are less likely to suck on them," sauid DiClerico.

These changes can't come soon enough. So far this year, poison-control centers have logged over 8,800 calls related to laundry-pod exposure.

"We feel that's still too many incidences and so we will continue to keep laundry pods off of recommended list of detergents," said DiClerico.

And if you need a container to store Halloween loot, try an old pillowcase or a reusable shopping bag.

Consumer Reports' advice is to keep laundry-pods out of any home with children under the age of 6.

Instead, try one of Consumer Reports top-rated liquid detergents such as Tide Plus Ultra Stain Release or Persil Pro-Clean Power Liquid 2 in 1.

For the full report from Consumer Reports, CLICK HERE.
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