Another toy recall: Aqua Dots beads
Thu Nov 8 2007
Lead poisoning is so last month. Now it seems we have to worry about our kids' toys being contaminated with GHB--you know, the date rape drug. According to CNN, "U.S. safety officials have recalled about 4.2 million Chinese-made Aqua Dots bead toys that contain a chemical that has caused some children to vomit and become comatose after swallowing them."
Recommended for children ages 4 and up, Aqua Dots are sort of like those beads we used to put on those white plastic shapes and then use an iron to make them harden. Except in this case, the dots come out as a liquid and dry with only the help of a fan. Much safer, you'd think. Upon closer inspection of the Aqua Dots, we noticed the typical choking hazard, but underneath it, there's an additional disclaimer in all caps: DO NOT EAT AQUA DOTS.
So, does that mean the company knew the dots were toxic before they hit shelves? Seriously, why the extra warning?
And don't think this toy is something you never would've considered buying. They made Wal-Mart's list of top 12 Christmas toys (they've since been removed), and were voted the 2007 Toy of the Year in Australia, where they are named Bindeez Beads.
When a chemical in the coating of the beads metabolizes, it becomes the toxic GHB. Three kids were hospitalized in Australia after swallowing large quantities of the beads. The U.S. has received "two reports detailing the severe effects of the digested beads."
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is urging everyone who has the toy to throw it away. Good thing we got to our box before it was donated to a toy drive!