Lead-tainted toys are old news! This Christmas, the new new thing is asbestos-tainted toys and other products. The CPSC doesn’t even test for asbestos, so it’s anyone’s guess what products might be hiding some away—or rather it used to be, until an independent consumer group ponied up the cash to pay for the testing.
The results cover a variety of products:
- CSI Fingerprint Examination Kit (asbestos in both the white and glowing powders)
- Art Skills’ Clay Bucket
- Three varieties of Ja-Ru Toy Clay
- Scotch High Performance Duct Tape and its All Weather Duct Tape
- DAP Crack Shot Spackling Paste and DAP’s 33 Window Glazing
- Gardner Leak Stopper
According to the article, “Asbestos also was also found in hair rollers, hot plates and small appliances imported from China and sold in major drug store chains. The organization may do additional testing on those products and others.”
It might be harder to blame a single nation this time around, since the products are manufactured in various countries including China, Canada, and Thailand.
Of the companies that responded to the reporter’s calls, CBS—which licenses the CSI toy—has said they’ll pursue independent tests for asbestos, and will have it removed from the market if it proves true. The Art Skills people contend that they produce “a safe and hazard-free product” which meets all current US safety standards. 3M flat out says “we don’t use asbestos” in their products, as does DAP.
The group behind the tests was formed in 2004 largely by victims of asbestos-caused diseases and their families; they spent over $165,000 to fund the testing of hundreds of products over the last 18 months, partly in response to the lack of action on the government’s part.
“Asbestos turns up in toys, children’s clay” [Seattle PI]