Page last updated at 16:35 GMT, Tuesday, 14 August 2007 17:35 UK

Mattel recalls millions more toys

Sarge from Pixar's Cars
Mattel blames the lead paint on a Chinese subcontractor

US toymaker Mattel has recalled more than 18 million toys worldwide, the second such recall in two weeks.

Chinese-made Sarge die-cast toys from the Pixar film Cars have been recalled because their paint contains lead.

It has also recalled toys containing small magnets that can come loose, including Polly Pocket, Batman Magna, Doggie Daycare and One Piece playsets.

The Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) said it had no reports of any injuries from the recalled products.

The earlier recall of 1.5 million toys was by Mattel's Fisher Price unit.

Unauthorised paint

Mattel has recalled 253,000 Sarge toy cars in the US and 183,000 from the rest of the world.

Barbie with Tanner
Sarge die-cast car
11 Doggie Daycare sets
44 Polly Pocket toys
4 Batman Magna toys
2 Barbie and Tanner sets
1 One Piece toy

Mattel said that 49,000 of the affected vehicles were in the UK and Ireland.

The company blamed the amount of lead in the paint on a subcontracted Chinese company called Hong Li Da using paint from unauthorised suppliers.

The recall is the latest in a series of alerts about Chinese products in the US, raising fears in Beijing that the "Made in China" label is being seriously damaged.

Chinese officials have announced a series of measures to try to tackle the problems, but analysts say that China's economy has grown so rapidly over the past two decades that addressing the issue will take a long time.

Small magnets

The other toys recalled contain small, powerful magnets.

The CPSC said that there had been 400 reports of magnets coming loose since Mattel recalled 2.4 million magnetic play sets in November 2006.

It is concerned that "if more than one magnet is swallowed, the magnets can attract each other and cause intestinal perforation or blockage, which can be fatal."

The CPSC said that before the initial recall, three children required surgery after swallowing more than one magnet.

Mattel is recalling 18.2 million magnetic toys worldwide, 1.9 million of which were sold in the UK.

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