Beware Windshield Wiper Fluid, Warns Poison Center At UAMS College of Pharmacy

By todd

LITTLE ROCK – As you prepare your vehicles for winter, please take note: only a few swallows of windshield wiper cleaner can poison, warns the Arkansas Poison Control Center operated by the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences’ (UAMS) College of Pharmacy.


Wiper fluid may contain methanol, a chemical which prevents freezing, according to the Arkansas Poison Control Center. Methanol is highly toxic to humans and pets if swallowed, absorbed in the skin, splashed in the eyes, or its fumes are inhaled. Methanol (also known as wood alcohol or methyl alcohol) also may be found in other automotive products, fuels, paints, varnishes, shellacs, wood stripers and solvents.


If you suspect that someone has swallowed windshield wiper fluid or any other poisonous substance, call the Arkansas Poison Control Center immediately toll free at 800-222-1222.


Help protect your family this winter by following these simple suggestions:

  • Keep automotive products and all poisons out of sight and reach of children.
  • Always store wiper fluid and other poisons in the original containers. Do not use food containers such as milk jugs or soda bottles to store household and chemical products.
  • If you have concerns about windshield wiper fluid or any other automotive product or poison, call the Arkansas Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222. Certified specialists in poison information are available 24 hours a day and your call is free and confidential.

UAMS is the state’s only comprehensive academic health center, with five colleges, a graduate school, a medical center, six centers of excellence and a statewide network of regional centers. UAMS has 2,538 students and 733 medical residents. Its centers of excellence include the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, the Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, the Myeloma Institute for Research and Therapy, the Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, the Psychiatric Research Institute and the Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging. It is one of the state’s largest public employers with about 9,600 employees, including nearly 1,000 physicians who provide medical care to patients at UAMS, Arkansas Children’s Hospital, the VA Medical Center and UAMS’ Area Health Education Centers throughout the state. UAMS and its affiliates have an economic impact in Arkansas of $5 billion a year. For more information, visit