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CPSC, U.S. PIRG hold toy safety news conferences on same day.

CPSC's new Chairman, Hal Stratton, held his first ever news conference on Tuesday, Nov. 26 to alert consumers about potentially hazardous toys.

On the same day, about an hour and a half earlier, U.S. Public Interest Research Group (U.S. PIRG) held its news conference to warn shoppers about "hidden toy dangers."

CPSC released a list of hazardous toys, all of them previously recalled by the agency. To obtain a list of the recalled toys, call toll-free 1-800-638-2772, or go to the CPSC website, www.cpsc.gov. CPSC also offered toy safety tips, including such admonitions as buying toys to suit the age and development of the child, looking for sturdy construction in toys, and avoiding small parts when buying for infants and toddlers. CNN and CBS News used coverage of the news conference Tuesday evening. But PIRG used its toy safety news conference to lobby for more regulations from CPSC. PIRG urged CPSC to ban phthalates from toys intended for children under three "at a minimum" and preferably, ban phthalates from toys intended for children five and under. As reported in previous editions of the Monitor, CPSC has found no evidence that the use of phthalates in toys is harmful to children.

PIRG also urged CPSC to enlarge the small parts tube tester and to change the small-ball rule to include small round "objects." PIRG recommended that CPSC require manufacturers to label all toys, not just the packaging, with manufacturer identification. PIRG also wants CPSC to regulate the level of sound that toys can produce to 85 decibels.

Choking hazards remains the big concern in the selection of toys. Both CPSC and PIRG noted that stuffed animals and other toys could contain small parts that can become detached and become potential choking hazards.
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Title Annotation:Public Interest Research Group; Consumer Product Safety commission
Publication:CPSC Monitor
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Nov 1, 2002
Words:295
Previous Article:Briefly noted ...
Next Article:Stratton `pleads guilty' to favoring free markets.
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