Mattel issues third recall of lead-tainted toys

Consumer Reports News: September 05, 2007 10:49 AM

Mattel has announced another batch of recalls--the third time in less than five weeks that the company has had to pull toys from stores because they contain excessive levels of lead paint.

This worldwide recall  involves 11 different toys, including eight pet and furniture playsets sold under the Barbie brand and three Fisher-Price toys --  two GeoTrax toys and a Big, Big World bongo set. No Barbie dolls are affected. A total of 844,000 toys are involved, about two-thirds of which were sold in the U.S.  The toys were all made in China by several different vendors.

The recalls, made in cooperation with the Consumer Product Safety Commission, are not surprising. When the company recalled over 9 million toys in mid-August, company chairman Robert Eckert predicted more action could be forthcoming as the company continued its testing of thousands of toys. In a statement announcing the latest recall, Mattel said it had spent more than 50,000 hours investigating its vendors and testing its toys. As a result, it added, several subcontractors are no longer making Mattel toys.

The CPSC said consumers should immediately take the recalled toys away from children and contact Mattel about how to receive a free replacement toy. Details on the recalled toys and the replacement program can be found at Consumers can also call 888-496-8330.

In addition, concerned parents  and caregivers  should check our five steps to assure their children's exposure to lead is minimal. Lead poisoning has been linked to developmental and learning disorders.

In the U.S., there are seven recalled Barbie toys that were sold at retail stores nationwide from October 2006 through August 2007 for about $10. The specific items and affected parts include:
• Dream Puppy House – orange paint on miniature dog
• Dream Kitty Condo – brown paint on miniature cat
• Table and Chairs Kitchen Playset – yellow paint on two dinner plates, brown paint on miniature dog, yellow and orange paint on potato chip bowl, orange paint on salad bowl
• Bathtub and Toilet Playset – brown paint on miniature cat
• Desk and Chair Bedroom Playset – brown paint on miniature dog
• Living Room Playset (deluxe) – brown paint on miniature cat
• Living Room Playset (premium) – yellow paint on purse

The two GeoTrax made by Fisher-Price were sold at retail stores nationwide from September 2006 through August 2007 for between $3 and $16 and include:
• GEOTRAX Rail and Road System Freightway Transport – painted yellow headlights on train car and miniature ladder
• GEOTRAX Special Track Pack – painted yellow headlights on train car and miniature ladder

A third Fisher-Price toy,  Big, Big World bongo set, sold at retail stores nationwide from July 2007 through August 2007 for about $20, was also recalled:
• “It’s a Big Big World” 6-in-1 Bongo Band – painted decal on top of clear plastic on drum

For more information on this recall, including photos, visit the CPSC web site and Mattel's web site.


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