Do your childs toys contain lead?
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Do your childs toys contain lead?

Thursday, July 21, 2011By Richard Alexander
You might be surprised to learn the yes they may.

Warning stickers can be found on all kinds of toys sold in some large retail stores including Toys “R” Us. Toy sellers have been adding them to comply with an Illinois law that went into effect last year. It requires specific warning labels if a children’s product has lead levels greater than 40 parts per million.

Because retail giants like  Toys “R” Us sell in many states besides Illinois the labels may be seen in other states due to difficulties in segmenting products for just one state.

According to a Toys "R" Us spokesman they are actively working with their to reduce the lead levels to below 40 ppm in all of their products so that no such warning labels will be needed in the future. All toys sold by the retailer meet federal guidelines for lead content.

The Illinois law went beyond federal regulations, which is 300 ppm for underlying materials; 90 ppm for paint and other surface coatings. The CPSC  just voted last week to reduce the lead limit in substrates to 100 ppm beginning August 14 of this year.

Like Illinois, California also has laws that require products to carry warning labels if they exceed certain levels, but those laws pertain to many products, not just toys.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) voted (3-2) for a new lower total lead content limit, which is called for in the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), goes into effect on August 14, 2011 for manufacturers, importers, retailers and distributors of children’s products.

Lead is a heavy metal that is toxic for children, and associated with lowered levels of learning, impaired hearing, brain damage and, at high levels, can be fatal.

Starting on August 14, 2011, manufacturers, importers, retailers and distributors of children’s products must comply with the new 100 ppm federal limit for total lead content. CPSC will not enforce the CPSIA’s independent third party testing requirement for total lead content until December 31, 2011, due to a stay of enforcement that is already in place.

The stay of enforcement does not apply to children’s metal jewelry, which currently must undergo independent third party testing.

The new 100 ppm lead content limit does not apply to inaccessible (internal) parts of children’s products and certain component parts of children’s electronic devices, like electronic connectors and plugs, including headphone plugs.

Lead content levels for children’s products are different from the levels Congress set for lead in paint or surface coatings. The limit for lead in paint or surface coatings is .009 percent. The .009 percent level has been in place since August 14, 2009 and independent third party testing is required for all paints or surfaces coatings used on children’s products.

If you or someone you know has been injured by a defective product, contact the defective product lawyers at the Alexander Law Group, LLP for a free case evaluation or call 888.777.1776. All calls free and confidential.

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