Girl's eyes severely burned after popping liquid detergent pack

NEWBERG, Ore. - Four-year-old Roxy Wiltshire, like many children, is curious.

On Thursday her curiosity led her into her parents' laundry room. She climbed on top of the toilet and opened a bag of laundry packs. She squeezed one. It popped and liquid detergent squirted all over her face and into her eyes.

She screamed, and her parents took her to the hospital, but the pain didn't go away for days.

It's the second recent local incident involving children who have accidentally gotten into these types of small packets of detergent thinking they are toys or candy reported on KATU News.

On Sunday, Julia Low's one-and-a-half-year-old son, Kai, became violently ill after he bit into a small laundry detergent pod by accident.

Roxy Wiltshire thought the laundry pack was a toy balloon.

"She didn't open her eyes for four days. We didn't know what the damage was," Roxy's mother, Jessica, said. "So for four days her dad and I had to take care of (her) and basically were devastated, sick, worried. We didn't know if our daughter could see again."

Roxy said when the detergent got into her eyes, "it felt like fire."

Her parents worried she'd go blind and doctors didn't know at first if that would happen. But on Sunday Roxy opened her eyes again.

Her eyes still have a little bit of redness and she still can't completely see out of her right eye. Jessica said doctors aren't sure yet whether that's permanent.

Roxy is doing much better. Doctors said she had a chemical burn from the detergent.

Her mom admitted she kept the bag open on the washing machine because she never heard the little packs could be dangerous.

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, it is in the middle of investigating all kinds of the small laundry packs. It started the investigation because children had been eating them, not popping them.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention just released some poisoning statistics.

For a one-month period in May and June of this year, more than 1,000 cases of laundry detergent exposure were reported to poison centers across the country. Of those, almost half were exposures to laundry detergent contained in pods. Most of the cases involved children who were two and three years old.

We first heard about this latest case of pod poisoning through a news tip. If there's news in your neighborhood, email us at