Biggest Toy Recalls Of 2011
November 23, 2011 by staff
Biggest Toy Recalls Of 2011, Hidden dangers lurk in some of those less expensive toys that parents might grab as stocking stuffers this time of year – like a Sesame Street Oscar the Grouch doll.
The small, furry green Oscar, purchased for $6.99, was one of the toys singled out in the annual toy safety report from the U.S. Public Interest Research Group.
The consumer advocate’s report, released Tuesday, found just over a dozen toys on store shelves that violate federal safety standards. Some had unsafe levels of lead or chemicals called phthalates, and others contained small parts that young children could choke on. Besides Oscar, other toys deemed potentially dangerous included a plastic book for babies; a $1 plastic mini-crossbow that fires off little balls and a hand-held “whirly wheel.”
The Oscar doll has a small hat that could come off easily, which is a possible choking hazard, PIRG said. The crossbow’s small parts also put young children at risk of choking, according to the report.
The book and the whirly wheel had high levels of lead, according to the study. But an importer of the whirly wheel disputes that, and says the company’s own testing shows the spinning magnetic toy with lead levels well below the limit.
PIRG also warned about toys that are too loud and could lead to damaged hearing, such as an Elmo talking cell phone that the group says tested just above voluntary industry noise limits.
Ed Mierzwinski, the group’s consumer program director, said industrial chemicals and toxins in toys were the biggest problems the group found this year. Exposure to lead can cause irreversible brain damage, and some studies have linked phthalates to reproductive problems.
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