Officials Warn Of Dangerous Plant Causes Blindness And 3rd Degree Burns – How To Spot It And How To Stay Safe

There’s a sneaky plant that’s spreading across the country like a virus, and touching it has some seriously dangerous side effects. Now officials from several states are speaking out in hopes that it can prevent burns and injuries due to the giant hogweed.

The giant hogweed has been found in Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio, Maryland, Oregon, Washington, New Hampshire, Michigan, Vermont, and Maine in the past – but now its spread to Virginia and residents are concerned…

While this massive weed is pretty to look at from a distance, touching it could result in lifelong damage. The giant hogweed sap contains a chemical called “photosensitizing furanocoumarins,” and when it comes into contact with skin, the sap’s chemicals make skin extremely sensitive to light.

The sudden sensitivity can cause third-degree burns and long-term skin problems. However, if a person accidentally rubs sap into their eyes, they could go blind permanently.

Now with another state under watch, it’s important to know how to protect yourself from this nasty plant.

When it comes to giant hogweed sap, you need to be able to recognize the plant itself and know how to act fast if you come in contact with it. The giant hogweed:

– is 8 to 14 feet tall

– has a cluster of small white flowers in “umbrella formation”

– has dark green, lobed leaves that can stretch more than 5 feet wide

– has a hollow stem with purple speckles and white hairs

If you do happen to touch the giant hogweed, you need to act fast. The New Jersey Department of Health recommends:

– immediately getting out of the sun

– splashing the area with cold water

– rinsing thoroughly with soap

– apply sunscreen to the affected area or keep it covered from months after initial contact

If you have a giant hogweed problem in your yard, the New York State officials warn not to remove it yourself:

“Do not mow, cut or weed whack the plant, as it will just send up new growth and put you at risk for being exposed to sap — the same kind of thing that would happen with poison ivy or sumac. Seek advice from professional plant control specialists about management options.

If you must touch giant hogweed, wear disposable rubber gloves, a long-sleeved shirt and pants. If you get sap on your clothes, carefully remove the clothing to avoid skin and eye contact and wash separately from other clothing with warm water and detergent.”

The giant hogweed isn’t a plant to mess around with! Avoid the area and call the proper removal team instead of attempting to do so yourself!

The giant hogweed isn’t a plant to mess around with! Avoid the area and call the proper removal team instead of attempting to do so yourself!


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