While Samsonite says its “Tokyo Chic” line of luggage is perfectly safe, it’s pulling the bags from Hong Kong stores after a consumer group said it found high levels of possible carcinogens in the handles on three of its suitcases. No one wants to pull something around that could cause cancer, after all.
The Hong Kong Consumer Council said the side handles on the suitcases had higher levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons than recommended in voluntary guidelines, reports the Associated Press. Those compounds are often in plastics, rubber and lubricating oil, and could’ve been left in trace amounts during manufacturing. Cancer and birth defects in animals have been linked to the compounds in the past.
Samsonite insists its bags are safe, and ordered independent tests that found the levels were “significantly lower” than what the council reported. It did pull the “Tokyo Chic” line in Hong Kong after the council said tests showed higher levels in those handles, and promised to replace the handles to allay any fears. That line will still be sold in other markets.
The company said that based on the independent tests and expert advice, it was “confident that consumers can continue to use its luggage products without any safety or health concerns.”