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Tuesday
Dec072010

Some Glass Bakeware Can Spontaneously Shatter

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that nearly 12,000 people were injured by glass bakeware over a decade-long period. That figure includes injuries from dropping glass and breaking it -- but also from bakeware that shattered on its own.

Consumer Reports spent a year studying the issue and was so concerned that it is now asking the government to investigate. Consumer Reports tests found that hot glass bakeware can indeed shatter unexpectedly.

"It would break in a forceful way that would actually shoot shards across the room," Don Mays of Consumer Reports told ABC News.

Both major glass bakeware manufacturers -- Pyrex and Anchor Hocking -- say decades ago they switched to a different type of glass that's more environmentally friendly to produce.

"They're using something called soda lime which is a less expensive glass and it's more prone to this sudden fracturing that you're seeing," Mays said.

To compare the two, researchers put European bakeware, which is still make of the old type of glass, in a 400-degree oven, then set it on a damp counter to cool. Nothing happened. But when they did the same experiment with U.S. bakeware made from the new type of glass, the glass shattered every time.

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ABC News Radio