A popular French fitness model has died after being hit by an exploding whipped-cream dispenser. The horrifying accident occurred on Saturday, when the pressurized canister Rebecca Burger was using at home blew up and collided with her chest, sending her into cardiac arrest. (Her family waited until yesterday to make an official announcement.) French media report that medics were able to get Burger’s heart beating again, but she was unconscious at the hospital and died the very next day, sadly.
For years, consumer groups, in France specifically, have been warning that defective connectors in those devices can cause the nitrous-oxide chargers to break off and shoot out “like a rubber bullet.” Dispensers operate by piercing what are frankly very volatile capsules with pins to fill their canisters with gas — something that doesn’t sound very safe at all when it’s put in those terms. Projectile capsules have reportedly broken teeth and put out eyes, and a victim in France who suffered six broken ribs and a cracked sternum told the press in 2013: “I was told that if the shock and blast had been facing the heart, I would be dead now.”
A dispenser similar to the one Burger reportedly used was posted on her Instagram page yesterday, along with the warning, “Do not use this type of device in your home!”
Burger’s was reportedly made by Ard’Time, and that France-based brand runs an entire website explaining that the dispensers’ plastic heads run the risk of exploding. Popular brands of whipped-cream dispensers in America, like iSi, have luckily fared much better — the worst incidents over here were back when “whippits” were a thing stupid kids did to get high. In France, though, the mishaps seem to happen to much more responsible people: The government actually warned consumers back in 2014 that at least 15 different models “have turned out to be dangerous and led to home accidents,” noting at the time that “only a handful of the devices have been turned in.”