Thursday, 28 July 2011

Your car air-con and benzene. A risk? No.

There's an email going round that claims to be from "Stanford Hospital and Clinics" and which suggests there's a health risk from using the air-conditioner in your car. It says that:
"No wonder more folks are dying from cancer than ever before. We wonder where this stuff comes from but here is an example that explains a lot of the cancer causing incidents. [...]

Car A/C (Air Conditioning) MUST READ!!!
Please do NOT turn on A/C as soon as you enter the car.
Open the windows after you enter your car and turn ON the AC after a couple of minutes.

Here's why:
According to a research, the dashboard emits Benzene, a cancer-causing toxin (carcinogen - take time to observe the smell of heated plastic in your car).

In addition to causing cancer, Benzene poisons your bones, causes anemia and reduces white blood cells.

Prolonged exposure will cause Leukemia, increasing the risk of cancer.

Can also cause miscarriage."
And on and on and on it goes. Fortunately this is all nonsense. It's a hoax. There is no connection between your car air-con and benzene fumes. Any link between benzene and cars is to do with fuel, not the air-con so the lesson is simply not to stick your nose up your exhaust pipe. For an informed discussion of the facts, see the American Cancer Society response and Snopes.

Don't Panic.

(And don't believe anything you read in an email until you've done some research.)

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