Last month, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) voted to approve a new national safety standard for high powered magnet sets.
As we have told you in previous articles and news regarding dangerous consumer products, toys made of high powered magnets posed a serious and dangerous injury risk for young children and tweens. See Maker Of Magnetic Desk Toy Sued Because Of Ingestion Risks And Serious Injuries To Young Children, Tweens And Teenagers.
Numerous companies that make high powered magnetic toys have recalled their products. The CPSC has even filed administrative complaints against makers of these toys to stop them from selling the toys. See Maker Of Magnetic Cubes/Balls Sued For Dangers To Consumers, Maker Of Magnetic Desk Toy Sued Because Of Ingestion Risks & Serious Injuries To Young Children, Tweens & Teenagers.
Magnets from magnetic sets, which can come in different shapes, such as balls/spheres, squares, etc., are extremely dangerous if ingested because they can lead to lifelong health consequences and even death. The magnets attract each other while inside the body and can pinch or trap the intestine or other digestive tissue between them. The magnets can also pierce intestinal walls requiring surgery.
Young children are especially at risk because they often put toys in their mouths. If pieces or parts of the magnetic sets/toys fall to the floor, children can pick them up, put them in their mouths and accidentally ingest them without the knowledge of their parents.
Magnetic sets are also dangerous for tweens because some accidentally ingest them by creating faux lip, tongue and nose piercings. The CPSC estimated that there were 2,900 emergency room visits between 2009 and 2013 due to consumers ingesting magnets.
The new safety standard requires that an individual magnet from a set must be large enough that the magnet does not fit into a CPSC small parts cylinder. A small parts cylinder is used to screen toys made for children under 3 years old, and parts or components of toys should not fit into the cylinder to prevent choking hazards for children under the age of 3.
The standard also requires that the power of the magnetic force must be lower than a specified measure. Some of the sets on the market had a magnetic force that was 37x greater than the new standard permits.
Many consumers have high powered magnetic sets or toys that do not comply with the new standard, and the CPSC is urging consumers to stop using them.
Consumers, such as tweens or young children, may have legal rights if they are injured by dangerous products such as magnetic toys. If you want to talk to someone about an injury due to a dangerous product, call 877.944.8396 to schedule a FREE consultation with the products liability lawyers at White and Williams.