The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has initiated a recall resulting from determinations that the product involved presents a serious ingestion hazard to children.
The recall relates to about 3,500 Eco-Novelty Recalls Jumbo Size and Jumbo Multipurpose Cosmo Beads Toys. These hard and colorful water-absorbing polymer beads can be easily mistaken for candy by a child. When the bead is ingested, it expands and can cause intestinal obstructions inside a child’s body, resulting in severe discomfort, vomiting, dehydration, and could be life-threatening. The toys need surgery to be removed from the body. Similar toys have not shown up on x-rays.
Cosmo Beads Jumbo Size Colorful Water Balls and Jumbo Multipurpose Colorful Water Balls toys are water-absorbing beads that when placed in water will hydrate up to the size of a racquetball. On the front of the toy packages it states Cosmo Beads ™ Colorful Water Balls, Just Add Water, Biodegradable, Non-toxic, and Colorfast. The packages have yellow and black color on the upper left corner and red in the lower right corner. The beads can be seen through an oval, cellophane window near the bottom of the package.
The government has at least one report of an 8-month-old girl who ingested a similar water-absorbing polymer ball that had to be surgically removed.
The toys were sold by Amazon.com, ifleemarket.com, and crystalsoilusa.com from June 2011 through August 2013 for between $2 and $20, and were imported by Eco-Novelty Corp., of Troy, Michigan.
Parents and caregivers should always keep in mind how a product will appear to a child in a school or household setting. Many toys are bright and colorful and even intentionally designed to resemble food or candy, inviting ingestion and choking injuries. If a toy, or one of its components, is small enough to be mouthed or swallowed, it should not be purchased for use in an environment with small children. Manufacturers and retailers of such toys must also pay more attention to safety issues associated with the marketing and sale of these items.
Sadly, many serious injuries and deaths have occurred over the years due to the ingestion of small parts by oral-age children. Please be vigilant regarding not only the design of toys but also the packaging and inserts with small parts warnings and instructions.
Toys and children’s products may be hazardous because of a defective design, or due to poor manufacturing, misleadingly advertised inaccurate labels, or inadequate cautions or warnings. If you have questions about these issues, feel free to contact Swartz and Swartz PC at (617) 742-1900 or Toll-Free at (800) 545-3732.