Reading the title of this post, you may think, “well, evidently this is some kind of special industrial flashlight. Or maybe an experimental nuclear flashlight. No one would be stupid enough to put a warning like that on a regular consumer flashlight.” You should know better.
Just how much lead was in that toy blood pressure cuff Mattel were so reluctant to recall back in February? The one they said “me federal regulations and international consumer product safety standards?” Well, a reader’s scientist friend working in lab tested it on the equipment there. According to his results, the amount of lead in the paint was 4-5% lead by weight. “For reference,” he writes, “U.S. EPA HUD guidelines set the action limit for paint at 0.5% lead by weight. Any level over 0.5% is considered to be contaminated…Lead paint used on houses 50 years ago had lead content of 2-15%.”
New legislation banning lead and (pending further study) six types of phthalates (chemicals suspected of causing heath problems) from children’s products has passed the Senate and now moves on to President Bush. In addition to banning lead and other chemicals, the bill will require independent testing of children’s products before they can enter the marketplace — a practice many consumers assumed was standard until they found out that Thomas the Tank Engine was covered in lead.
Two years ago athletic shoe giant Reebok announced a recall of 300,000 lead tainted charm bracelets that were given away as free gifts with the purchase of children’s footwear.
Members Of Congress Implore Mattel To "Do The Right Thing," Recall Lead-Tainted Toy Blood-Pressure Cuff
56 Members of Congress want to know why Mattel CEO Robert Eckert refuses to issue a nationwide recall for a toy blood-pressure cuff that is contaminated with lead. The affected blood-pressure cuff, sold as part of the Fisher-Price Medical Kit, was recalled exclusively in Illinois after Mattel received a complaint from State Attorney General Lisa Madigan. Legislators want Eckert to stand by a pledge made to reassure a jittery public before the holiday buying season that Mattel would ‘earn back our trust with deeds, not just with words.’
THE QUOTE:“We take consumer product safety very seriously. We do not comment on pending litigation.”
Ladies and Gentlemen… Boys and Girls… The final tally for lead recalls is in.
Consumer Reports says that Fisher-Price has finished testing another toy blood pressure cuff and have found that it exceeds the Illinois lead limit for toys.
It’s been one hell of a morning for RC2. The manufacturer of the infamous lead-tainted Thomas & Friends toys is recalling a feeding chair that 12 kids have managed to use as a launch platform and a “Winnie-the-Pooh” potty-training chair that’s tainted with lead. Funnily enough, only the orange paint used on the “Winne-the-Pooh” plaque is tainted.
Illinois has tough laws when it comes to dangerous toys, and now Fisher-Price has found itself on the wrong side of the Illinois Lead Poisoning Prevention Act, according to Consumer Reports.
While Aquadots grabbed all the news this month, 1,391,800 products were recalled for lead contamination. Most of them were cheap toy jewelry, cars, and action figures. The sort of stuff you see at “dollar stores.”
Toys R Us has written a reassuring letter to its customers outlining its toy safety policies and threatening to discontinue selling products from any company that ignores them. Since Toys R Us still sells Mattel toys and Thomas & Friends wooden train sets, it’s hard to imagine a company that wouldn’t make the cut.
About a month ago, the Center for Environmental Health announced that they’d found high levels of lead in an unrecalled Curious George toy. The manufacturer, Marvel, refused to recall the doll because they said they needed to confirm the tests.
Consumer Reports is busy testing lead levels in children’s toys that are not on any recall list just to see if they are safe. They’re nice like that.
The CPSC has announced the results of a special investigation into the effectiveness of home lead testing kits. The verdict? Don’t waste your time.
Winnie-the-Pooh is the latest character to fall victim to the lead toy contamination epidemic, according to the CPSC, which recalled the playsets yesterday.