Mattel Inc., Fisher Price, and eighteen other companies have been accused of having illegal amounts of lead in their products, the legal amount being 600 parts per million. Lead is a toxic substance that damages the nervous system and many other organs. There are many toy recalls each year, but this year’s recall is especially damaging because it deals with very popular toys, such as Barbie accessories and toy cars.
The Los Angeles city attorney and California attorney general have filed suit against the twenty toy companies, insisting that the manufacturers inspect their products to make sure they are safe before going on the market or put a warning label on the product, warning the consumers of possible health risks (i.e. cancer and birth defects).
The attorney general, Jerry Brown, is hoping the companies will improve the testing systems in their foreign manufacturing plants. Because so many companies have their factories in foreign countries, Brown emphasizes the need for companies to address the contamination problem and monitor these foreign plants more carefully.
In response to the lawsuit and growing public concern over toy safety, a hotline has been established to give consumers information on recalled products, and the safety of products on the shelves. You can reach them at 888-88-4TOYS or visit their website at www.toyinfo.org.
For more information on this subject, please refer to the section on Defective and Dangerous Products.