My face melted when drain cleaner exploded

My face melted when drain cleaner exploded

SHOCKING INJURY: Shelia Insch suffered horrific facial burns after a drain unblocker exploded.

Shelia before the accident

My face melted when drain cleaner exploded

First published in News Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Crime Reporter

THESE shocking pictures show the horrific burns suffered by a Hampshire grandmother after drain unblocker exploded in her face.

What should have been a simple household chore turned into a terrifying nightmare for Sheila Insch as she was sprayed with sulphuric acid.

Now B&Q, where Sheila brought Extreme Green’s Dr Drain, has withdrawn it from all their stores and trading standards have launched an investigation into the product.

Just seconds after pouring two drops of the solution into the kitchen sink at her B&B, the toxic chemicals came shooting back up through the plughole, scorching her.

Doctors say it was only her quick-thinking that “saved her face”, which her daughter Gwen Vincent describes was “melting” before her eyes.

Dangers Speaking to the Daily Echo as she recovers at her Netley home, the grandma-of-ten wants to warn others of the dangers when using these products and is demanding manufacturers put clearer warnings on labels.

Before using the product, Sheila, who runs Telemark House in Sellwood Road, Netley Abbey, with her two daughters, read the instructions, noted that it may bubble, wore gloves and used just two drops.

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Sheila said: “It was a terrible nightmare. One second it was bubbling, then the next second it had exploded like a bomb.

“My immediate thought was to protect my eyes. All I can remember is the terrible burning and the horrendous fumes.

“It was horrific but I knew I had to keep splashing my face with water all the way to the hospital and not to put my hands to my face because that would burn them too. The doctors told me I had saved my face."

Sheila was rushed to Southampton General Hospital by her daughter Gwen, but due to the severe nature of her second-degree burns she was transferred to the specialist burns unit at Salisbury Odstock Hospital, where she stayed for three days.

Doctors told Sheila if she had screamed, kept her eyes open or failed to keep her burns wet, she would have lost her sight, suffered internal injuries and been scarred for life.

Daily Echo: My face melted when drain cleaner exploded

Rodney Donmall, head chemist for Extreme Green Limited, told the Daily Echo they were helping Trading Standards with their investigations but insists if used correctly Dr Drain is safe and carries sufficient warnings.

He added: “It clearly states that this product will react violently if it is in contact with other products and I would suspect there was something else down her drain for it to react in such a way.

“Incidents like this are very rare.”

Comments (17)

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1:13pm Sat 3 Jul 10

English Defence League Romsey Division says...

I've had worse.
I've had worse. English Defence League Romsey Division
  • Score: 0

2:43pm Sat 3 Jul 10

driverbelcher says...

My money is on there having been previous attempts to clear said blocked drain, and the product has reacted with some bleach/ soda crystals etc that had been poured down previously.
My money is on there having been previous attempts to clear said blocked drain, and the product has reacted with some bleach/ soda crystals etc that had been poured down previously. driverbelcher
  • Score: 0

3:17pm Sat 3 Jul 10

Peter Stewart says...

Another possibility is that there was insufficient water in the trap. Under these circumstances, adding more than one or two drops of concentrated sulphuric acid would produce explosive boiling. There are few more dangerous chemicals than hot, concentrated sulphuric acid, especially when it vaporizes in such an explosive accident. Always wear goggles and have a bucket of water to hand in case.
Another possibility is that there was insufficient water in the trap. Under these circumstances, adding more than one or two drops of concentrated sulphuric acid would produce explosive boiling. There are few more dangerous chemicals than hot, concentrated sulphuric acid, especially when it vaporizes in such an explosive accident. Always wear goggles and have a bucket of water to hand in case. Peter Stewart
  • Score: 0

3:50pm Sat 3 Jul 10

Atpost says...

Peter Stewart wrote:
Another possibility is that there was insufficient water in the trap. Under these circumstances, adding more than one or two drops of concentrated sulphuric acid would produce explosive boiling. There are few more dangerous chemicals than hot, concentrated sulphuric acid, especially when it vaporizes in such an explosive accident. Always wear goggles and have a bucket of water to hand in case.
Thanks Peter

Your breadth and depth of knowledge in the field of chemistry will surely put you in line for the 2011 Nobel prize.
[quote][p][bold]Peter Stewart[/bold] wrote: Another possibility is that there was insufficient water in the trap. Under these circumstances, adding more than one or two drops of concentrated sulphuric acid would produce explosive boiling. There are few more dangerous chemicals than hot, concentrated sulphuric acid, especially when it vaporizes in such an explosive accident. Always wear goggles and have a bucket of water to hand in case.[/p][/quote]Thanks Peter Your breadth and depth of knowledge in the field of chemistry will surely put you in line for the 2011 Nobel prize. Atpost
  • Score: 0

5:26pm Sat 3 Jul 10

Unlimited* Service says...

driverbelcher wrote:
My money is on there having been previous attempts to clear said blocked drain, and the product has reacted with some bleach/ soda crystals etc that had been poured down previously.
Ditto.
[quote][p][bold]driverbelcher[/bold] wrote: My money is on there having been previous attempts to clear said blocked drain, and the product has reacted with some bleach/ soda crystals etc that had been poured down previously.[/p][/quote]Ditto. Unlimited* Service
  • Score: 0

6:57pm Sat 3 Jul 10

Condor Man says...

I remember a guy at school who put sulpher down the loo just to see how it reacted- it blew his face off. Anything with sulpher in it is bound to react with water.
I remember a guy at school who put sulpher down the loo just to see how it reacted- it blew his face off. Anything with sulpher in it is bound to react with water. Condor Man
  • Score: 0

8:18pm Sat 3 Jul 10

Get it right says...

Condor Man wrote:
I remember a guy at school who put sulpher down the loo just to see how it reacted- it blew his face off. Anything with sulpher in it is bound to react with water.
Sulphur as an element is a relatively inert crystaline substance which is insoluble in water and doesn't react with it. Concentrated sulphuric acid is another matter.
When mixing the acid with water, the advice is usually to add the acid to the water, not the other way round - and then only when wearing appropriate protective gear.
I think the problem here was the presence of another chemical in the blocked drain and, I suspect, the addition of more than two drops of the acid.
[quote][p][bold]Condor Man[/bold] wrote: I remember a guy at school who put sulpher down the loo just to see how it reacted- it blew his face off. Anything with sulpher in it is bound to react with water.[/p][/quote]Sulphur as an element is a relatively inert crystaline substance which is insoluble in water and doesn't react with it. Concentrated sulphuric acid is another matter. When mixing the acid with water, the advice is usually to add the acid to the water, not the other way round - and then only when wearing appropriate protective gear. I think the problem here was the presence of another chemical in the blocked drain and, I suspect, the addition of more than two drops of the acid. Get it right
  • Score: 0

9:15pm Sat 3 Jul 10

Atpost says...

Get it right wrote:
Condor Man wrote: I remember a guy at school who put sulpher down the loo just to see how it reacted- it blew his face off. Anything with sulpher in it is bound to react with water.
Sulphur as an element is a relatively inert crystaline substance which is insoluble in water and doesn't react with it. Concentrated sulphuric acid is another matter. When mixing the acid with water, the advice is usually to add the acid to the water, not the other way round - and then only when wearing appropriate protective gear. I think the problem here was the presence of another chemical in the blocked drain and, I suspect, the addition of more than two drops of the acid.
HELP!
Another would-be has escaped!!

sw = stop-bull
[quote][p][bold]Get it right[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Condor Man[/bold] wrote: I remember a guy at school who put sulpher down the loo just to see how it reacted- it blew his face off. Anything with sulpher in it is bound to react with water.[/p][/quote]Sulphur as an element is a relatively inert crystaline substance which is insoluble in water and doesn't react with it. Concentrated sulphuric acid is another matter. When mixing the acid with water, the advice is usually to add the acid to the water, not the other way round - and then only when wearing appropriate protective gear. I think the problem here was the presence of another chemical in the blocked drain and, I suspect, the addition of more than two drops of the acid.[/p][/quote]HELP! Another would-be has escaped!! sw = stop-bull Atpost
  • Score: 0

10:43pm Sat 3 Jul 10

OSPREYSAINT says...

Should have called in a Polish Plumber or two they would have put the job right straight away.
Should have called in a Polish Plumber or two they would have put the job right straight away. OSPREYSAINT
  • Score: 0

10:56pm Sat 3 Jul 10

Stupideditor says...

Well whilst you lot are trying to put a conclusion to this accident I wish this lady a speedy recovery from her injuries and hope she isn't scared too badly.
Well whilst you lot are trying to put a conclusion to this accident I wish this lady a speedy recovery from her injuries and hope she isn't scared too badly. Stupideditor
  • Score: 0

11:05pm Sat 3 Jul 10

Atpost says...

Stupideditor wrote:
Well whilst you lot are trying to put a conclusion to this accident I wish this lady a speedy recovery from her injuries and hope she isn't scared too badly.
You probably mean scarred.
[quote][p][bold]Stupideditor[/bold] wrote: Well whilst you lot are trying to put a conclusion to this accident I wish this lady a speedy recovery from her injuries and hope she isn't scared too badly.[/p][/quote]You probably mean scarred. Atpost
  • Score: 0

8:17am Sun 4 Jul 10

Uncle Chuffnuts says...

Condor Man wrote:
I remember a guy at school who put sulpher down the loo just to see how it reacted- it blew his face off. Anything with sulpher in it is bound to react with water.
Know the feeling. I have the same problem after 10 pints and a chicken madras.
[quote][p][bold]Condor Man[/bold] wrote: I remember a guy at school who put sulpher down the loo just to see how it reacted- it blew his face off. Anything with sulpher in it is bound to react with water.[/p][/quote]Know the feeling. I have the same problem after 10 pints and a chicken madras. Uncle Chuffnuts
  • Score: 0

9:01am Sun 4 Jul 10

espanuel says...

Atpost,Minstead. I think you should get a life, making stupid comments as you have done. I wonder what you would have said if it had been one of your relatives. Hope the lady heals very quickly and no scars.
Atpost,Minstead. I think you should get a life, making stupid comments as you have done. I wonder what you would have said if it had been one of your relatives. Hope the lady heals very quickly and no scars. espanuel
  • Score: 0

12:57pm Sun 4 Jul 10

samantha pia says...

Dr Drain Max Strength Plus is sold in 500ml (1 pint) tubs, If you are to only use 2 drops, then why sell it in wide neck tubs in a volume that can clear every sink, bath, shower in Buckingham Palace?

Would not a small neck, and pepet in a 20ml bottle be far better?

the implacation of the wide neck, implies to pour a few drops, not meaning a single measured drop.

i would also think it is impossible to pout just 2 single drops from that container and would think the amounbt in it, and the neck size was just waiting for an accident to happen.

i hope she heals fast, and sues the a$$ of Dr Drain
Dr Drain Max Strength Plus is sold in 500ml (1 pint) tubs, If you are to only use 2 drops, then why sell it in wide neck tubs in a volume that can clear every sink, bath, shower in Buckingham Palace? Would not a small neck, and pepet in a 20ml bottle be far better? the implacation of the wide neck, implies to pour a few drops, not meaning a single measured drop. i would also think it is impossible to pout just 2 single drops from that container and would think the amounbt in it, and the neck size was just waiting for an accident to happen. i hope she heals fast, and sues the a$$ of Dr Drain samantha pia
  • Score: 0

9:46pm Sun 4 Jul 10

Mr sheep says...

samantha pia wrote:
Dr Drain Max Strength Plus is sold in 500ml (1 pint) tubs, If you are to only use 2 drops, then why sell it in wide neck tubs in a volume that can clear every sink, bath, shower in Buckingham Palace?

Would not a small neck, and pepet in a 20ml bottle be far better?

the implacation of the wide neck, implies to pour a few drops, not meaning a single measured drop.

i would also think it is impossible to pout just 2 single drops from that container and would think the amounbt in it, and the neck size was just waiting for an accident to happen.

i hope she heals fast, and sues the a$$ of Dr Drain
most bottles have a warning on them stating they are harmfull, and its in a picture form = orange tabe with black picture inside its ment to advise the user of the dangers, That said I agree with what you are saying only the clever ppl that make the product will have soliciters that would have made oj simpson look inocent . I realy hope she gets better fast and dosnt suffer .

most ppl dont realise is in there kitchens the chemicals they have if mixed in the correct fashion are absolutly leathal and most of us are not chemicly educated to a masters degree, so we pour with ignorance half the time
[quote][p][bold]samantha pia[/bold] wrote: Dr Drain Max Strength Plus is sold in 500ml (1 pint) tubs, If you are to only use 2 drops, then why sell it in wide neck tubs in a volume that can clear every sink, bath, shower in Buckingham Palace? Would not a small neck, and pepet in a 20ml bottle be far better? the implacation of the wide neck, implies to pour a few drops, not meaning a single measured drop. i would also think it is impossible to pout just 2 single drops from that container and would think the amounbt in it, and the neck size was just waiting for an accident to happen. i hope she heals fast, and sues the a$$ of Dr Drain[/p][/quote]most bottles have a warning on them stating they are harmfull, and its in a picture form = orange tabe with black picture inside its ment to advise the user of the dangers, That said I agree with what you are saying only the clever ppl that make the product will have soliciters that would have made oj simpson look inocent . I realy hope she gets better fast and dosnt suffer . most ppl dont realise is in there kitchens the chemicals they have if mixed in the correct fashion are absolutly leathal and most of us are not chemicly educated to a masters degree, so we pour with ignorance half the time Mr sheep
  • Score: 0

9:46pm Sun 4 Jul 10

Mr sheep says...

samantha pia wrote:
Dr Drain Max Strength Plus is sold in 500ml (1 pint) tubs, If you are to only use 2 drops, then why sell it in wide neck tubs in a volume that can clear every sink, bath, shower in Buckingham Palace?

Would not a small neck, and pepet in a 20ml bottle be far better?

the implacation of the wide neck, implies to pour a few drops, not meaning a single measured drop.

i would also think it is impossible to pout just 2 single drops from that container and would think the amounbt in it, and the neck size was just waiting for an accident to happen.

i hope she heals fast, and sues the a$$ of Dr Drain
most bottles have a warning on them stating they are harmfull, and its in a picture form = orange tabe with black picture inside its ment to advise the user of the dangers, That said I agree with what you are saying only the clever ppl that make the product will have soliciters that would have made oj simpson look inocent . I realy hope she gets better fast and dosnt suffer .

most ppl dont realise is in there kitchens the chemicals they have if mixed in the correct fashion are absolutly leathal and most of us are not chemicly educated to a masters degree, so we pour with ignorance half the time
[quote][p][bold]samantha pia[/bold] wrote: Dr Drain Max Strength Plus is sold in 500ml (1 pint) tubs, If you are to only use 2 drops, then why sell it in wide neck tubs in a volume that can clear every sink, bath, shower in Buckingham Palace? Would not a small neck, and pepet in a 20ml bottle be far better? the implacation of the wide neck, implies to pour a few drops, not meaning a single measured drop. i would also think it is impossible to pout just 2 single drops from that container and would think the amounbt in it, and the neck size was just waiting for an accident to happen. i hope she heals fast, and sues the a$$ of Dr Drain[/p][/quote]most bottles have a warning on them stating they are harmfull, and its in a picture form = orange tabe with black picture inside its ment to advise the user of the dangers, That said I agree with what you are saying only the clever ppl that make the product will have soliciters that would have made oj simpson look inocent . I realy hope she gets better fast and dosnt suffer . most ppl dont realise is in there kitchens the chemicals they have if mixed in the correct fashion are absolutly leathal and most of us are not chemicly educated to a masters degree, so we pour with ignorance half the time Mr sheep
  • Score: 0

9:29am Mon 5 Jul 10

Get it right says...

Mr Sheep wrote:
"...most of us are not chemicly educated to a masters degree, so we pour with ignorance half the time"
You, clearly, were not gramatically educated either.
Mr Sheep wrote: "...most of us are not chemicly educated to a masters degree, so we pour with ignorance half the time" You, clearly, were not gramatically educated either. Get it right
  • Score: 0

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