Captain America's star-plated shield shouldn't be dangerous for children who idolize the comic book and movie hero, but a toy consumer group is telling parents to be aware of the avenger's shield this Christmas. The problem? It contains way too much lead.
The shield was one of numerous toys highlighted in the U.S. Public Interest Research Group annual report "Trouble in Toyland" that sounds a warning bell for what it believes are potentially the most harmful toys for children, according to NBC News
"Be vigilant this holiday," said PIRG in its report.
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"We visited numerous national toy stores, malls and dollar stores in September, October and November 2013 to identify potentially dangerous toys," reads the report's executive summary
. "Our researchers examined the (Consumer Product Safety Commission) notices of recalls and other regulatory actions to identify trends in toy safety. Our investigation is focused on toys that posed a potential toxic, choking, strangulation or noise hazard."
Captain America's shield was spotlighted in the executive summary for violating the American Academy of Pediatrics lead recommendations for children ages two and up. The report said the shield contained 29 times the recommended lead standard by the academy.
"Exposure to lead can affect almost every organ and system in the human body, especially the central nervous system," the report stated. "Lead is especially toxic to the brains of young children and can cause permanent mental and developmental impairments; it has no business being in children’s products."
The report cited the Ninja Turtles Pencil case containing 150,000 ppm of one of six phthalates banned from toys. It said the toy was far in excess of the 600 ppm of the toxic metal cadmium, as well.
The report said that children are often vulnerable to choking on small toy parts, like small balls, marbles and balloons. The report said more than 90 children died from choking accidents related to toys between 2001 and 2012.
The report said numerous toys contain small magnets, which children often swallow causing injuries. The reports stated that there were 1,700 emergency room accidents around the country involving the high-powered batteries from 2009 to 2011. The report noted that 70 percent of those accidents involved children from four to 12.
NBC News provided PIRG's list of most dangerous toys:
Toys containing small parts:
Toys containing small parts with label violations:
- Princess Wand made by Greenbrier International, sold at Dollar Store for $1
Small Ball-Like toys, toy parts, and rounded food toys posing choking hazards:
- Bead Kit made by Greenbrier International, sold at Dollar Store for $1
- Littlest Pet Shop - #2744 Horse made by Hasbro, sold at Kmart for $3.99
- Littlest Pet Shop – Candyswirl Dreams Collection #3313 made by Hasbro, sold at Wal-Mart for $4.49
- Littlest Pet Shop- Sunil Nevla made by Hasbro, sold at Wal-Mart for $3.99
- Littlest Pet Shop-Candyswirl Dreams Collection #3317, sold at Wal-Mart for $4.49
- Littlest Pet Shop- Seal and Dolphins made by Hasbro, sold at Kmart for $4.49
Near-small parts that may pose choking hazards:
- Gobble Gobble Guppies made by Swimways, sold at Kmart for $14.99
- Super Play Food Set made by Geoffrey LLC, sold at Toys-R-Us for $19.99
- Fisher-Price Loving Family Outdoor Barbecue, made by Mattel, sold at Kmart for $22.99
Balloons marketed to children under 8:
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- Punch Balloons made by Toy Investments, Inc, sold at Toys-R-Us for $.98
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