Safety experts are warning about a dangerous social media challenge involving teenagers.
They’re popping detergent pods in the mouths and then posting the videos online.
YouTube continues to leave many such dangerous videos for children to view. Even promoting them in the most popular video as a suggestion to view. Instead targeting controversial topics such as health, news and religion.
Many of the social media videos are recorded and posted by minors. They’re putting the poisonous laundry pods in their mouths for clicks and internet fame.
They call it the “Tide Pod Challenge.”
Marc Pagan, 19, did it on a dare. He told CBS2 he knew better but did it anyway.
“A lot of people were just saying how stupid I was or how – why would I be willing to do that?” he said. “No one should be putting anything like that in their mouths, you know?”
Now authorities say what started as an internet joke has gone too far.
What should Tide PODs be used for? DOING LAUNDRY. Nothing else.
— Tide (@tide) January 12, 2018
“On Instagram especially and Snapchat, to eat Tide Pods,” one high school student told CBS2’s Jessica Layton.
“I’ve seen them mainly on Youtube,” another added.
“Just really weird. It’s disgusting,” said one girl.
Ann Marie Buerkle, acting chairman of the Consumer Product Safety Commission, says ingesting any of the liquid carries a deadly risk. The poisonous pods contain ethanol, hydrogen peroxide and polymers, Layton reported.
Some stores have started putting them inside display cases, so they don’t get stolen. The pods are bright and colorful and to children, they can look like candy.
— Scrubby (@_Scrubby_) January 13, 2018
This year, there’s already been a 20 percent spike in calls to poison control centers from teens exposed to the laundry pods. At least 10 deaths have been linked to ingesting the pods. Two were toddlers, eight were seniors with dementia.
Procter & Gamble, the maker of Tide products, told CBS News, “They should not be played with… even if meant as a joke. Safety is no laughing matter.”
EATING A TIDE POD! *REMOVED FROM YOUTUBE* pic.twitter.com/T5D42xgSuE
— Matthew 2018 (@MatthewLush) January 13, 2018
“I could cause a corrosion injury, it could cause basically an ulceration or bleeding. The other issue is if it goes down your windpipe, it could cause difficulty breathing,” said Dr. Robert Glatter, of Lenox Hill Hospital.
Buerkle says her group has worked with manufacturers to make the packets less attractive to children.
“Making that laundry packet opaque, less attractive, less colorful,” she said. “Reducing the toxicity and the strength of laundry detergents.”
“They need to learn from parents and teachers that stunts like this can land them in the hospital, ICU, and it can be deadly,” said Glatter.
Why is it that tide pod videos where people say to NOT eat them get people strikes, but a video where a man shows a dead body to MILLIONS of children and jokes about it gets on trending?#EXPLAIN
— Random_Human (@Random_Human445) January 13, 2018
things youtube has done:
– taken away my right to monetize my entire channel for the last 2.5 years
– disabled livestreams on my channel
– denied me a 100k subscriber play button award
– took down my tide pod video but not the tide pod videos from their larger creators
— Majira Strawberry (@tallfuzzball) January 13, 2018
Tide Pod Challenge! Dad is Supportive! 😂 wtf is wrong with people?? SUBSCRIBE 👇 https://t.co/yb6P4BEnw7 #tidepods #tidepod #tidepodchallenge #comedy #funnyvideos #funny #giggles #youtube #YouTubers #trending #darkhumor #dadlife #wtf #AnnoysMeMoreThanAnything #comedian #Wow pic.twitter.com/WnIw0mV5sP
— Travis Hunter (@hoonertang) January 11, 2018