Dry Shampoos Recalled Over Benzene, Cancer Risk
Several dry shampoo brands have voluntarily recalled their product after excessive levels of the cancer-causing substance, benzene was found. Benzene has been linked to leukemia and other disorders of the blood. At least one of the companies involved in the manufacture of these shampoos is being accused of having foreknowledge of the carcinogen prior to issuing the recall.
To determine whether or not a recall was done voluntarily and ethically, you need only look at the timeline. An ethical recall is issued once a company becomes aware of a problem with their product. In other cases, a company may never issue a recall, deny any allegations made in personal injury lawsuits publically, then settle the lawsuits handsomely but under a seal so that the public never knows the outcome. Eventually, on a long enough timescale, the bottom falls out of their plan and their company either ends up with a black mark on its record or is completely destroyed by the courts like Takata’s exploding airbags.
Allegations that a company knew that its products had a carcinogenic agent in them is tantamount to alleging the company intentionally caused injury to its customers. In cases like these, punitive damages are awarded to plaintiffs to punish the company for its unethical conduct. The company says they did not know that benzene was dangerous. They claim the chemical is used in several popular products including pesticides and shampoos.
Why is benzene dangerous?
Benzene is a known human carcinogen that can get into your bone marrow and corrupt the DNA of your red blood cells. This results in leukemia or other blood disorders. The lawsuit claims the company knew about the hazards of benzene going back to November of 2021. Yet they did not issue a recall until October of 2022. Further, the company failed to warn consumers that benzene was used in their products and potentially exposed them to a cancer-causing agent.
Those who use dry shampoo are encouraged to get their red blood cell count tested. They are also encouraged to keep the products as proof that they used the dry shampoo during the exposure period. Those who are diagnosed with leukemia after using the shampoo for an extended period of time may be able to claim that the company is responsible for their cancer.
Who is at risk for benzene exposure?
Firefighters. Firefighters are exposed to more toxic chemicals and have rates of cancer and respiratory diseases that are far in excess of the general public. This is because they are exposed to burning plastics and other materials that release chemicals like benzene into the air. Benzene does significant damage to the lungs. Those who work around printing ink are also at higher risk for benzene toxicity.
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