26 October 2006

Watch out for lead in Halloween props and toys

The folks from the Sierra Club passed along this info about lead in Halloween toys. Interesting, unsettling stuff, and worth sharing:

With Halloween just around the corner, we’re trying to get the word out about toxic toys and toy jewelry. A lot of parents buy toy jewelry to go with their kid’s costumes or as treats to hand out instead of candy without realizing that they might be health hazards. It turns out that a lot of the cheap toys and jewelry that comes out of vending machines and even some stuff on the shelves of major retailers are laden with toxic compounds, particularly lead.

We’ve compiled a few tips for parents to make sure their kids are safe this Halloween. Here are a few we have posted on the web:

  • Avoid glossy, fake painted pearls which may be painted with lead paint.
  • Avoid purchasing toys from vending machines. In 2004, 150 million pieces of children's jewelry were recalled from vending machines nationwide. To be safe, parents should avoid these products.
  • Avoid toys which have small parts which may be swallowed, especially if the parts are metal or metallic.

More safety tips and information about the dangers of lead can be found on the Sierra Club Safe and Healthy Communities blog.

More: Halloween hacks

Your comments

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ALWAYS be aware of lead! I bought a tiny Christmas tree for my then-toddler to decorate with one ornament a day for Advent. The tree had a tag on it saying it "may contain lead, do not ingest". Well, I wasn't planning to feed it to him, but I knew he'd be man-handling it daily so I returned it. It pays to be cautious about all sorts of products.

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