5 On Your Side

Store caught selling recalled outdoor firepot gel

Posted August 15, 2011

— The fuel for ceramic outdoor firepots has been described as a bomb in a bottle by one consumer whose son was badly burned while filling one of the pots. 

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission in June announced a recall of 460,000 bottles and jugs of gel fuel distributed by Napa Home & Garden. The recall makes it illegal to sell or resell the item, but 5 on Your Side caught a store in Fuquay-Varina who was still selling the gels. 

After the recall, a viewer emailed 5 on Your Side saying the Shoppes on Main initially refused to take back two bottles of the fuel bought there. The customer noted that the gels were still being sold at the store. When the viewer mentioned the recall to the store owner's mother who works there, she told him the pots were safe and that people were just misusing them. 

About two weeks after the customer's report, WRAL News stopped by the Shoppes on Main to see if the gel was still being sold. It was. Store owner Scott Tart reacted to the visit by grabbing a WRAL News camera and threatening the photographer. 

"I'm gonna hurt you," Tart said. 

Scott Tart Store caught selling recalled outdoor firepot gel

After he calmed down, Tart said he did not know about the recall. 

"We didn't realize there was a problem, and if there's a problem, we'll take it down," Tart said. 

When asked why he didn't react immediately when a customer told his mother about the recall, Tart said his mother didn't give him the information.

"I heard some stuff, but I didn't realize there was a recall," Tart said. 

While WRAL News was in the store, the gels were removed from the shelves. 

"We don't mind taking them down. They're down. Consider them down. They're not for sale here anymore," Tart said. 

The customer who contacted WRAL News was given store credit, but Tart now says he can have a full refund. 


This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • JustOneGodLessThanU Aug 23, 2011

    Why does the gubmint have to get involved?

    If people want to buy "bombs in a bottle", it's a free country.

    Shoot, I might even LIKE bombs-in-a-bottle. The next thing you'll be telling me is that I can't carry around the leaf of a naturally-growing weed.


  • luvstoQ Aug 18, 2011

    Seems we must be "saved" from our own selves anymore. Where has common sense and responsibility for our own actions gone? Some stroller companies even have written in their warnings to be sure and take the baby out of stroller before folding it - no kidding!!!!

  • cuzin244 Aug 17, 2011

    Wal-Mart in Dunn still has these things on the shelf. Saw them today while shopping.

  • SirWired Aug 17, 2011

    Not that anyone will read this, but the problem was not that the gels are flammable. You can buy Tiki Torches, Hurricane Lamps, Kerosene heaters, etc. at any store, and they are perfectly legal. The problem with these particular lamps was that the gel does not always burn with a visible flame. People were thinking it needed fueling up, when in fact they just couldn't see that it was lit already.

  • grimreaper Aug 17, 2011

    Sorry, gonna have to side with the old lady on this one: "she told him the pots were safe and that people were just misusing them."

    Exactly, what joker lets their kid use flammable gels? And I'll bet they were pouring it into an already fired pot too...against the direction of the label...nanny state...nanny state...

  • bigpinkstork Aug 17, 2011

    Whether the product is inherently dangerous or not, it had been recalled. The store owner should have refunded the money, and he certainly shouldn't be threatening to hurt people.

  • futureorthodoc Aug 17, 2011

    " Coffee is hot, who does not know that?"

    Seems to me that someone made a lot of money not too long ago by not having a warning label to tell them their coffee was hot. Bottom line, American's are getting dumber by the day. We can drink out of a can without instructions on the label. Ever wonder why we are in the mess we are in? I suppose there were no labels on government spending...LOL

  • Boostershot Aug 16, 2011

    It doesn't seem that Scott Tart was looking after consumer safety just the almighty dollar. Will not be shopping at the Shoppes on Main.

  • bmg379 Aug 16, 2011

    what a Dirty Insecure Childish Kid

  • what the........ Aug 16, 2011

    It's not the product, it's the people. HELLOOO!