Totally about 500 children and women are reported to have died or been injured after inhaling poisonous chemicals used in humidifier disinfectants manufactured and sold by several large distributors in South Korea from 2001 to 2011.
Lotte Mart's CEO apologized to the public on April 18, 2016 and offered plans for compensation to the victims. It was the first company involved in the humidifier sterilizer deaths to do so. Aekyung has not yet made a public apology.(But Lotte Mart raised an objection to court's verdict later this news because of the large amount of compensation for the victims.)
British-based firm Reckitt Benckiser has eventually admitted for the first time selling a humidifier disinfectant that killed about 100 people in South Korea on May 2, 2016.
Oxy Reckitt Benckiser, Cefu, Lotte Shopping, Homeplus, Aekyung have been criticised for previously refusing to take responsibilities more than five years.
In this regard, YWCA with 36 civil society organization claims as below:
- The Humidifier disinfectant manufacturers that caused the mysterious illnesses and deaths must apologize to the victims and Korean citizens.
- Public prosecutor's office must punish the humidifier disinfectant manufacturers responsible for the deaths.
- We boycott any products from Oxy that has sold the poisonous chemical and tried to cover up its side effects.
- Korean Government must find out the explicit reasons of this case, ways to support for victims, and measures to prevent the similar cases.
- Korean National Assembly must establish special laws for the affected by humidifier sterilizer and hold a public hearing.