Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Toxic Dangerous Toys New York

Black Friday is just around the corner, but parents are being urged to take care when buying toys this year. Several being sold in Albany County contain toxic chemicals that pose health risks to children, according a new survey.  Researchers found a dozen toys on store shelves containing lead, mercury, arsenic, cadmium and more – toxic chemicals that have been linked to cancers, cognitive impairments and hyperactivity.

The report entitled “Toxic Toys in Albany County” was presented in downtown Albany November 17th by Clean and Healthy New York and the New York League of Conservation Voters Education Fund.

You can hear my radio report and read a transcript HERE.


Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today advised the public of several popular toys available for purchase this holiday season that could pose a risk to children. Testing commissioned by the New York State Division of Consumer Protection has found that the “Disney Frozen Musical Watch” and the “Princess Expressions Accessory Kit” contain lead exceeding federal standards in children’s products. The Division of Consumer Protection has also found that several cars in the “Tough Treadz Auto Carrier” toy have sharp edges that can pose a laceration hazard to young children. Individuals with any of these products should set them aside, in a safe area away from children, to await future manufacturer instructions.

“As a parent, the safety of my children is paramount. With the holiday shopping season upon us, parents and consumers must be forewarned about the hazardous materials contained in certain toys so they avoid purchasing them and putting their children at risk,” Governor Cuomo said. “I urge manufacturers, distributors and retailers of all three of these potentially harmful toys to immediately discontinue their sales and be vigilant in alerting those who have already purchased them about the risks they pose.”

The Division of Consumer Protection has provided the Consumer Product Safety Commission with laboratory results exhibiting the hazards of the following toys and called for a national recall of these products. The Division of Consumer Protection is working with manufacturers, distributors and retailers to ensure the toys are removed from sales circulation.

Disney Frozen Musical Watch – view photo of product here
The federal standard for lead in children’s toys is 100 parts per million (ppm). According to DCP’s commissioned tests, the “Disney Frozen Musical Watch,” purchased at Target and distributed by the Accutime Watch Corp., contains 160 ppm of lead in the buckle of the watch and 130 ppm in the prong used to secure it. The buckle and prong were tested separately and elevated levels of lead were found in each component.

Princess Expressions Accessory Kit – view photo of product here
DCP’s commissioned tests determined that the necklace in the “Princess Expressions Accessory Kit,” purchased at Christmas Tree Shops and manufactured by Almar Sales Co., contained 140 ppm of lead, also exceeding the federal limit.

Lead can be a hazardous material to children and adults if it gets into their bodies. Depending on the level and length of exposure, lead can harm a young child's growth, behavior and ability to learn. While exposure to lead can be toxic to everyone, young children are at the greatest risk of developing health problems due to lead poisoning; children under the age of 6 are more likely to get lead poisoning than any other age group. More information about lead poisoning and prevention is available on the New York State Department of Health website here.

Tough Treadz Auto Carrier – view photo of product here
The “Tough Treadz Auto Carrier,” manufactured for children ages 3 and up, was purchased at Family Dollar in Albany and distributed by the Midwood Brands LLC and Polyfect Toys Co. Ltd. Each toy contains an assortment of die cast metal cars with sharp edges. The sharp edges are in violation of toy safety standards enacted by the federal Consumer Product Safety and Improvement Act of 2008.

The Division of Consumer Protection has reached out to the manufacturers and distributors of these products to alert them of its findings and has urged them to cease distribution and sales of the products, voluntarily recall them, and provide a means of redress for consumers who have already purchased them. In addition, Division of Consumer Protection has notified affected retailers of its findings and requested that they remove the products from their shelves and discontinue sales.

The Division of Consumer Protection has also provided the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission with its laboratory results, and has called for a national recall of the products. The Consumer Product Safety Commission is currently performing its own review.

Federal law requires that manufacturers and importers test all toys designed or intended primarily for use by children 12 years of age and younger for compliance with federal children’s product safety standards. The Children’s Product Safety and Recall Effectiveness Act of the New York State General Business Law requires a commercial dealer to contact any person or entity that has purchased a product subject to a recall or warning within 24 hours. The dealer must direct the termination of sales or distribution of the recalled product to any purchasers and provide instructions for how to properly destroy it to the manufacturer. In addition, retailers are required to remove all recalled children’s products from their shelves within 24 hours of receiving a recall or warning notice.

For more information and educational tips to keeping individuals, families and children safe this holiday season, visit the Division of Consumer Protection website here or follow the agency on Twitter at @NYSConsumer and Facebook at

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