Gel Fuel Safety

Gel fuel is a highly flammable liquid that is usually alcohol or ethanol based. The gel is often used for keeping dishes hot at outdoor picnics, keeping Tiki torches lit, fueling decorative ceramic pots, and keeping insects away. The fuel can stay lit for longer than many other fuel sources and does not put off an odor, so it can be an attractive product that consumers are drawn to. However, gel fuel presents a serious burn danger if burning fuel comes in contact with skin, clothing, or other items. Pourable gel fuels pose a very serious risk of injury that consumers are not aware of.

Pourable Gel Fuel Recall

In June 2011, pourable gel fuel was recalled by nine major manufacturers and sale of the volatile fluid was halted. The recall began following many different incidents in which consumers were burned or injured after pouring the gel fuel into already burning containers. The addition of more gel fuel to gel fuel that is already burning can cause an explosion. A flame can also ignite the fuel as it is being poured and can travel back into the container, injuring the user. Many types of gel fuel do not create a highly visible flame; so many victims have poured the gel fuel into the containers believing that the fuel was no longer burning, leading to catastrophic fires and explosions. Consumers have also burned when lighting the fuel or after the fuel had been spilled.

Pourable Gel Fuel Lawsuits

The product has been deemed to be inherently dangerous, and many lawsuits were filed by people that had been injured or had family members killed following gel fuel explosions, spills, and burns. While pourable gel fuel have not been widely sold following these incidents, recall and lawsuits, many retailers are unaware of the danger and still sell the product. The product should not be sold. Those people that have been injured following the use of a pourable gel fuel are encouraged to contact an attorney.

Gel Fuel Safety Tips

To use gel fuel safely, the following safety tips should be observed:

  • Do not use pourable gel fuel
  • Opt for single-use containers
  • Only use containers that are designated for gel fuel use
  • Extinguish flames by placing a lid or other non-flammable cover over container
  • Keep a wide area surrounding the gel fuel free of combustible materials
  • Keep gel fuel away from children and pets, especially while burning
  • Always store gel fuel in a cool area
  • Do not smoke near gel fuel