Instant Cup of Soup Burns

Alarmingly, burn units at hospitals across the country see a surprising and regular number of children coming in with serious burns caused by popular cup of noodles type instant soups. These instant noodle soups are often packaged in a Styrofoam cup that is wide at the top and narrow at the base, which makes them unstable and likely to tip onto the consumer. Most hospitals contacted reported seeing kids burned by soup cups of noodles several times a week, with one Washington hospital regularly seeing 5-6 kids a week with this type of injury. Children, especially toddlers, are more at risk for these burns because their coordination is less developed and they are less able to appreciate the risk of the hot soup.

Noodle soup has been called "strangely perfect for delivering a serious burn." A study has shown that the noodles retain heat and stick to the skin, resulting in hospital stays more than twice as long as when patients are scalded by a hot liquid such as coffee or tea. Surgery, permanent scarring and lack of mobility in joints are all common outcomes with these injuries.

The outrageous element to this story is that these injuries are preventable. The leading brand is packaged in a tall cup with a narrow base, an unstable design. These tip over three times more easily than brands which use a short and squat cup as their package.

3 elements to keep in mind with cup of noodles burns:

  • children are the most frequent victims
  • combination of the noodles and the soup burns severely enough to cause scars
  • dangerous design of the packaging causes the injuries

The product liability attorneys at CHAE help injured people and their families with just this type of case. Contact CHAE to schedule a free consultation with our product liability lawyers.