Sunday, 25 March, 2001

Warning Labels on Bungee Cords?

I bought a package of replacement bungee cords for my truck last week.  I use the things surprisingly often, and they tend to get brittle and snap after a few years.  I opted for the cloth covered type this time rather than the heavy black rubber ones.  The hooks on the old rubber cords tend to fall off and get lost, and the rubber straps seem to wear out faster than the cloth covered type.  Anyway, today I actually opened the package.

There's a warning label on each cord.  The label states the cord's rated capacity ("Do not exceed 75 lbs.") and a warning not to stretch the 24" cord longer than 40".  There are also warnings about firmly attaching the hooks, keeping your face away from the cord when attaching or detaching it, and a couple of other warnings that I don't recall now (and I'm too lazy to go out to the garage to find a label).  I'm surprised they actually got all that information on the little label.

Warning labels on bungee cords.  What a concept.  I can understand the weight and stretch ratings, but it's obvious that the other warnings are there simply to prevent some Darwin Award nominee from hurting himself and bringing suit against the manufacturer.  It's painfully obvious to anybody who gives it a moment's thought that these bungee cords are giant rubber bands that can cause some serious damage if they're used stupidly.  The warning labels serve only as a source of humor to those of us who are smart enough to read them.  Anybody who would misuse a bungee cord is probably too stupid to read anyway, so the warning labels are a complete waste.  Amazing.