Things More Dangerous than Nuclear Power: Whipped Cream Dispensers

Yesterday I was made aware of a news story involving a French fitness blogger who met an untimely end. What happened? Was it Chernobyl? Three-Mile Island? FUKUSHIMA?!

No.

This lady was killed by her whipped cream dispenser. Apparently, Ms. Burger was using a formerly recalled whipped cream dispenser that malfunctioned, causing the nitrous oxide canister to rocket into her chest, which initiated a heart attack.

This device has killed more people than Three-Mile Island.

Others have been gravely injured by this innocuous device.

The BBC reported that in 2013, one victim of an exploding cream dispenser told RTL radio: “I had six broken ribs, and my sternum was broken. At the hospital, I was told that if the shock and blast had been facing the heart, I would be dead now.”

In light of the first recorded death-by-creamery, a French magazine reported:

In the space of four years, we have counted more than twenty accidents with the siphon Ard’Time and, in seven years, about sixty accidents of all marks confused — sometimes leaving very serious sequelae: loss of an eye, teeth broken, tinnitus, multiple fractures in the face or the chest … But these figures are probably much lower than the actual number of accidents.

So why hasn’t the Sierra Club, a leading environmentalist organization, updated its claim that “…nuclear power [is] a uniquely dangerous energy technology for humanity”? After all, since its inception in 1957, the commercial nuclear power industry has killed exactly zero members of the public— less than whipped cream dispensers.

The United States Nuclear Navy, which began in 1954 with the launch of the USS Nautilus, has accumulated over 139 million miles of nuclear propulsion (as of 2008), with well over 5,400 reactor years of operation accident-free.

Oh, and by the way… most of the navy personnel that operate these naval reactors are barely old enough to drink. Can you claim a technology is necessarily that dangerous when a bunch of kids have safely operated it for thousands of man-hours? Think about that, Sierra Club.


Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Idaho National Laboratory or of any agency of the U.S. government.

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