Maine CDC Press Release

June 15, 2007

Toys Recalled Because of Lead Paint

Contacts:
Dora Anne Mills, MD, MPH
Tel: (207) 287-3270
 
Mary Ann Amrich
Tel: (207) 287-8753


AUGUSTA – The Department of Health and Human Services’ Maine Center for Disease Control wants Maine parents to know what to do about common toys that have been recently recalled because they contain lead.

“With childhood lead poisoning being one of the most preventable environmental toxins, it is disconcerting to hear that once again a common toy is being recalled because of lead paint,” commented Dr. Dora Anne Mills, Director of the Maine CDC.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recently recalled some Thomas and Friends Wooden Railway Toys because of lead paint. Those that are recalled were sold between January 1, 2005 and June 13, 2007.

Children who put these toys in their mouths, or who play with the toys and put their hands in their mouths may get lead poisoned. The CPSC is not aware of any lead poisoning linked to these specific toys. Children younger than 3 years of age are at most risk, especially if they frequently put their hands or their toys in their mouths. Pictures of the toys and additional information are available on CPSC’s website: http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml07/07212.html .

Mills encouraged Maine families to follow these simple steps:

• If you know you have these toys, take them away from children. Call RC2 Corp. toll-free at (866) 725-4407 for free replacement toys.

• If you know you have the recalled toys and your children are less than 3 years old – especially if your child has not had a recent blood lead test - contact your health care provider about having a blood lead screening test.

• If you have Thomas & Friends Wooden Railway Toys but are not sure if you have the toys in question, you can test them with a lead test kit from your local hardware store.

• Call the Maine CDC’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program if you have any questions at: 1-866-292-3474.

“Unfortunately, this recall is the latest in a long list of toys and children’s jewelry recalled by CPSC for lead hazards. There have been at least 11 other major toy recalls so far this year due to lead toxins. We urge families with young children to periodically check the Maine CDC’s Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program website for links to the recalled toys with pictures, which can be found at: http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/eohp/lead/ ,” Dr. Mills added.

Despite these many recalls, the major cause of lead poisoning for Maine children is still the presence of lead paint and lead contaminated dust in old homes. Because of the potential for lead exposure in house paint, all children should have a blood lead screening test at one-and-two years old.