San Francisco-Oakland Product Liability Attorney Comments on Toxic Chemicals in Everyday Cleaning Products

Exposure to toxins in cleaning products is pervasive throughout homes in the United States and children are especially vulnerable to the harmful effects of chemicals. An infant’s exposure can be particularly high due to the fact that they crawl on the ground and put their hands in their mouths, which causes them to ingest chemicals from the floor such as hardwood or tile cleaners and carpet finishes. Frequent use of hazardous cleaning chemicals is associated with persistent wheezing among pre-school children, and increases the likelihood of asthma attacks among children. Even the cleaning products that are labeled “green” emit hazardous compounds not listed on labels.

A study at the University of Washington, has shown that there are hundreds of chemicals hiding in popular products such as, laundry detergents, deodorants, shampoos, and air fresheners. All such products emit at least one chemical classified as toxic or hazardous, according to the study, and some even emit at least one chemical considered a probable carcinogen by the U. S. Environmental Protection agency. The study established the presence of various chemicals but made no claims about possible health effects. However, the researchers have found from surveying the public that 20 percent of the population have had adverse health effects from air fresheners, and about 10 percent complained of adverse effects from laundry products vented to the outdoors, especially among asthmatics.

The Household Product Labeling Act, which is currently under review by the U.S. Senate, would require manufacturers to list ingredients in air fresheners, soaps, laundry suppliers and other consumer products. Consumers can avoid such chemicals by cleaning natural ingredients, such as with vinegar , lemon and baking soda. For more information on volatile organic compounds, visit the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s website at and the National Library of Medicine. If you or loved on suffered an injury due to the use of a hazardous product and would like to know if you have a claim, please contact our office. We have over 10 years experience handling product liabity claims and know how to help victims win the compensation they deserve.