Universal Fuel & Water Jug Spout

EZ-POUR was recently featured on KSDK news!

EZ-POUR was recently featured on KSDK news!

Plastic Gas Can Safety

Sonya Potter, KSDK 10:52 p.m. CDT May 13, 2014

CHESTERFIELD, Mo. – We continue to follow Mike Bush’s 5 on Your Side investigation about the dangers of red plastic gas cans and how a mere spark can turn them into a bomb. Now, we’re sharing how a local business is trying to make your old gas cans safer and a local expert shares some important safety tips.

Exploding gas cans and the science about how to stop them from going up in flames is something Mark Wyne knows all about.

“I was a contractor and I have lots of old cans around, and the spouts were all breaking off, and I couldn’t find a spout,” said Wyne. “I actually went on eBay to find an old spout and an old spout was bringing $25, and I thought, ‘Hey, wait a minute there’s something here.'”

Wyne owns Combined Manufacturing in Chesterfield. Two years ago, after researching alleged problems and dozens of lawsuits against the manufacturers of red plastic gas cans, Wyne started making replacement spouts for old gas cans. But he says the EZ-POUR spout isn’t just for pouring, he designed them for safety.

“One of the key components of the lawsuit was the flame arrester that they opted not to put flame arrester in there, so I stopped production had a flame arrester designed and put in before I ever took any product,” said Wyne.

A flame arrester is a metal screen that is supposed to dissipate the heat and prevent a spark or a flame from jumping back into the can and exploding. In 2009, the Children’s Gasoline Burn Prevention Act was signed into law. The law requires all gas cans to have child resistant caps.

“First of all you want to store it in a place that’s well ventilated, preferably not in the home,” said Capt. Ray Daniels.

Daniels is the deputy fire marshal for the City of St. Louis. He says when those fumes come into contact with even a spark it can be dangerous. So he recommends storing gas cans away from any source of ignition, like pilot lights, electrical outlets and hot water heaters.

And when filing up a can, place the container on the ground maintaining contact with the nozzle, to prevent discharging static electricity. And don’t fill the can more than 95 percent, to allow for expansion of vapors.

Wyne estimates there are about 200 million old gas cans out there. If they were made before 2009, his safety spout will work on most of them.

“If it saves one life, I guess it’s worth it,” said Wyne.

NewsChannel 5 does not recommend any specific type of gasoline can, or safety spouts. The EZ-POUR spout is available at area farm and home stores, some hardware stores and online.

Gasoline safety tips from the St. Louis Fire Department:
The St. Louis Fire Department encourages all to use gasoline for its sole intended purpose, that being, internally for engines! Not for starting fires, as a solvent, cleaners etc. manufacturers make products for those purposes.

Gasoline transport/filling:
-In an approved container; with the UL label or another reputable testing organization.
-Never in glass (glass breaks)
-An approved container that seals properly; no towels or rags serving as caps
-Place approved container on ground maintaining contact with the nozzle; this prevents the buildup and discharge of static electricity.
-Never fill up more than 95 percent, allowing room for expansion from vapor

Gasoline Storage:
-Don’t store if you don’t need to! Purchase fuel for the immediate need..
-If possible do not store in your home
-In an approved container in a well-ventilated area
-Away from potential ignition sources; ex. hot water heaters; furnace; electrical outlets etc.

View video and article on KSDK’s website