Hand Sanitizer in Hot Vehicle Could Be Hazardous
Raise your hand if you are one of the millions who now carry a bottle of hand sanitizer in your vehicle.
I am one of those millions who, for the past several weeks, has been keeping hand sanitizer in both vehicles. Following any stop at the store or gas station, I immediately start pumping the hand sanitizer. It's a good practice, however, we now learning we need to be careful.
The National Fire Protection Association has issued a warning about the dangers of what can happen when hand sanitizer is left in a hot vehicle or stored in large quantities.
Without getting super-technical, the bottom line, as described in this video, is this. The alcohol used in hand sanitizers is flammable. At room temperature, when the vapors meet oxygen, a viable ignition source could cause a serious problem.
The NFPA says the likelihood of a bottle of sanitizer spontaneously combusting isn't great without some ignition source, but it's important to know that there are risks involved.
The Western Lakes Fire District in Wisconsin posted a photo that portrayed some sort of explosion in a vehicle. We can't verify the validity of the photo, but the information and warning they issued is worth listening to.
By its nature, most hand sanitizer is alcohol-based and therefore flammable. Keeping it in your car during hot weather, exposing it to sun causing magnification of light through the bottle,
----and particularly being next to open flame while smoking in vehicles or grilling while enjoying this weekend----can lead to disaster.
I will continue to keep a small bottle of hand sanitizer in my vehicle, however, I will be extremely careful to not leave it in direct sunlight. Since I am not a smoker, I feel my risk is low. There's no need for anyone to be alarmed, just be aware.