Posts Tagged ‘ Buckyballs ’

CPSC Bans Sale of Buckyball Magnets, Citing Child Health Hazard

Thursday, July 26th, 2012

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued a stop-sale order for Buckyballs, a magnetic stress ball toy that is meant for adults but has caused dangerous health problems in children.  The ban is despite efforts by Buckyballs’ efforts to prevent the product from getting into children’s hands; the company’s website still has a statement reading, “A government agency (the Consumer Product Safety Commission) is saying they should be recalled because children occasionally get ahold of them. This is unfair. We market exclusively to adults. We are vigorously defending our right to market these products you love.”

Reuters reports on the CPSC’s decision:

The commission ordered distributor Maxfield and Oberton Holdings of New York to halt sales because injuries to children who had swallowed them had continued to rise, the CPSC said in a complaint.

“Notwithstanding the labeling, warnings and efforts taken by (Maxfield and Oberton), ingestion incidents continued to rise because warnings are ineffective,” the CPSC said. It said the magnets presented a “substantial product hazard.”

Buckyballs are small, powerful round rare earth magnets that are sold as toys and desktop accessories. When children swallow them they can pinch or trap intestines and require surgery to remove, the CPSC said.

Since they went on the market in 2009, numerous incidents involving children have been reported. In January 2011, a 4-year-old boy had his intestine perforated after he swallowed three magnets he thought were chocolate candy, the complaint said.

Although the commission issued a safety alert in November, it has received more than a dozen reports since then of children ingesting the magnets, with many requiring surgery, it said.

Image: Buckyballs, via http://www.ohgizmo.com/

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Commission: Magnetic Stress Balls Dangerous to Children

Monday, March 12th, 2012

A number of brands of small magnetic balls that are designed to alleviate stress in adults are causing serious problems for children, because kids are swallowing them and requiring serious abdominal surgery as a result.  CNN.com reports:

They are powerful pea-size magnets marketed as stress relievers for harried adults but called a safety risk for children by the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

The magnets are sold under the brand names Buckyballs and Nanospheres among others.

“We want parents to be aware of the danger associated with these innocent-looking magnets,” safety commission Chairman Inez Tenenbaum said in a November statement. “The potential for serious injury and death if multiple magnets are swallowed demands that parents and medical professionals be aware of this hidden hazard and know how to treat a child in distress.”

The Consumer Product Safety Commission then reported 22 incidents involving the magnets from 2009 through October. “Of the reported incidents, 17 involved magnet ingestion and 11 required surgical removal of the magnets. When a magnet has to be removed surgically, it often requires the repair of the child’s damaged stomach and intestines,” the commission statement said.

The Buckyballs website has posted a public service announcement video reminding parents that their product is not intended for children.  Five warnings appear on the product’s packaging as well.

Image: Buckyballs, via http://everyjoe.com/

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