Verify Before You DIY

The age of video-based online tutorials is quickly growing. Facebook, for instance, has essentially become a digital conveyor belt of videos teaching people how to make everything from Crock-pot General Tso’s chicken to colored slime to 3D-printed guns. These videos are often edited down to streamline the transfer of information and captivate Facebookers, including those that have no intention of making the featured item. One issue is that many of these videos—specifically, the more science-based ones—do not properly outline warnings pertaining to ingredients or components that may be hazardous, explosive, or illegal (depending on where you live). Recently, a few children have been arrested on charges surrounding science projects that have either required chemicals illegal in Florida or inadvertently resulted in explosions or toxic fumes. Although the charges in these cases have been dropped, the cases highlight the importance of referring to the list of prohibited chemicals in your state and performing additional research on the ingredients and components being used, even if you are using common household cleaning or cooking products.


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