Alaskan Woman Dies After Mistaking Antifreeze For Home Brew

Discussion in 'Bizarre and Off-Beat News' started by Taximom, Jan 3, 2007.

  1. Taximom

    Taximom Former Member

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    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,240720,00.html

    A 51-year-old Emmonak woman died after drinking antifreeze she mistook for home brew, Alaska State Troopers said.
    Thelma Immamak's boyfriend, Franklin Murphy, also drank the toxic liquid with her on Sunday and was medevaced to Anchorage for treatment. His condition was not immediately available Tuesday. (more at link)
     
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  3. BAD_BUTTERFLY

    BAD_BUTTERFLY Former Member

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    Sorry to make light of the situation, but for crying out loud. If you can't tell the difference between your home brewed boose and anti freeze I am thinking you shouldn't have drank it in the first place.
     
  4. Taximom

    Taximom Former Member

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    I'm with you, Bad Butterfly!

    I don't know why manufacturers can't change the color or make antifreeze taste bitter, or smell terrible.

    What a horrible way to go. Blech.
     
  5. LionRun

    LionRun Former Member

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    I agree. Children, pets, and wildlife die or have permanent kidney damage from drinking anti-freeze. Sadly, this is not uncommon. I have many animals. So, I keep anti-freeze and other toxic substances in an empty freezer on the top shelf, and I keep the door closed.

    Gasoline is actually odorless. The icky smell is added to warn us of its presence (i.e. gas leak in a home or auto). If we can orbit space, why can't we do what seems simple? Put some bad tasting inert substance in anti-freeze.

    I feel bad for the woman who died, and for the boyfriend who is also ill from drinking the anti-freeze. It may give new meaning to the phrase, "not the sharpest tool in the shed" but, they suffered greatly for their actions.
     
  6. dark_shadows

    dark_shadows Former Member

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    Sorry Taximom,:)

    I did not see your thread until I was searching the forums and saw the title with a response from LionRun in the headlines.
    Respectfully,
    dark_shadows
     
  7. Kymistry35

    Kymistry35 It's never to late to be who you could have been

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    I read this about the many poisonings by antifreeze in wikipedia:

    For this reason bittering agent (denatonium benzoate) is usually added to engine coolant to make it taste unpleasant. In the United States, there is legislation before Congress (H.R.2567/S.1110) that would make the use of a bittering agent mandatory.

    Propylene glycol, on the other hand, is considerably less toxic and may be labelled as "non-toxic antifreeze". It is used as antifreeze where ethylene glycol would be inappropriate, such as in food-processing systems or in pipes in homes, as well as numerous other settings. It is also used in food, medicines, and cosmetics, often as a binding agent. Propylene glycol is "generally recognized as safe" by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in food. However, it should not be thought that propylene glycol based antifreeze is safe for consumption. In the event of accidental exposure emergency medical services should be contacted.
    In the 1980s inventor Jack Evans discovered the advantages of using a waterless coolant. His final formulation is a mixture of ethylene glycol and propylene glycol. This coolant has a high boiling point of 370 °F and is not corrosive, solving many of water's problems including freezing.

    Most commercial antifreeze formulations include corrosion inhibiting compounds, and a colored dye (commonly a green, red or blue fluorescent) to aid in identification. A 1:1 dilution with water is usually used, resulting in a freezing point of approximately −40 °F (−40 °C). In warmer areas weaker dilutions are used.

    Glycol antifreeze solutions should generally be replaced with fresh mixture every two years. Many modern cars now come filled with organic acid technology (OAT) antifreeze (such as Dex-Cool[1]), which has an extended service life of five years. Although these still contain glycol, OAT solutions may not be compatible with conventional inorganic-based coolants containing glycol (e.g., with silicates, borates, phosphates) and, if changing from one type to the other, the cooling system must be thoroughly flushed with clean water.<SUP class=noprint>[citation needed]</SUP> Typically OAT antifreeze contains a red or pink dye to differentiate it from the conventional inorganic coolants (blue or green). Some of the newer technology OAT coolants claim to be compatible with all types of OAT and inorganic-based coolants; these are typically green or yellow in color.

    Take caution in mixing antifreezes. The problem becomes when you mix a standard coolant with a newer engineered coolant, they actually create an acid that eats at aluminum and rubber. Also the newer coolants generally require very specific type cooling systems. You cannot use the newer coolants in older style cars that never received an engineered coolant from the factory. The radiators will not be efficient enough for the coolant and they are made of materials that the coolant corrodes.

    If ingested, the antidote for antifreeze is usually ethanol or fomepizole.
     
  8. Taximom

    Taximom Former Member

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    Oh for pete's sake. It's taking an act of congress here to add a bitter taste to anti-freeze???!!!:confused: :razz:

    Only in America.

    I've heard about the little children and pets drinking it accidentally, and I've read about the people poisoning others with it. I can't believe manufacturers wouldn't do this on their own. Shame on them.:loser:

    Thanks for that info, teonspaleprincess. If I shake my head anymore at some of the things that go on in this world, my head is going to fall off!

    Dark_Shadows, not sure what the apology is for, but no worries here. :blowkiss:
     
  9. LionRun

    LionRun Former Member

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    Spot on Taximom. Now when we get a chance to vote let's do it one and all. There are some things we can influence. Pressuring companies or getting a bill passed is something we can help change.
     
  10. partyuv5

    partyuv5 New Member

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    Although this is not the best time to say this, as someone did above "not the sharpest tool in the shed." How about "not the brightest bulb on the tree"
     
  11. GlitchWizard

    GlitchWizard Reprobate

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    Her liquor isn't top shelf. ha ha
     
  12. curious1

    curious1 So broccoli, mother says your good for me,well I'm

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    You know, I have been known to work on my own car from time to time. Dear old dad is big on car maintenance and knows his way around one and taught me. I can honestly say that having handled Anti-freeze and smelled it I would me no more likely to drink it and think it tasted 'okay' than I would be to drink transmission fluid and think it tasted 'okay'. There is a sweet smell to it, but it is definately a 'chemical' smell.
     
  13. GlitchWizard

    GlitchWizard Reprobate

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    So, we've established that you smell more than the lady who drank it...

    *grin*

    I took auto mechanics when I was in high school (lotsa guys!) and I have to say - that neon green - other planet looking color doesn't say "Let me put that in my mouth" to me.
     
  14. curious1

    curious1 So broccoli, mother says your good for me,well I'm

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    ohhhh, too many way to go with that one Glitch. I am gonna leave that alone. :D
     

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