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Last Updated: Friday, 5 October 2007, 08:53 GMT 09:53 UK
Fresh US recall of Chinese toys
Woman shopping for toys in Chinese store
China has vowed to improve product safety standards
US authorities have recalled more than 600,000 Chinese-made toys, the latest in a series of product scares involving Chinese goods.

The affected items are sold by a range of retailers including Toys R US.

More than 500,000 keychains and toys are being recalled after being found to contain excessive levels of lead paint.

About 80,000 baby rattles are being removed from sale because they pose a potential risk, although regulators said no injuries had been reported.

Lead levels

More than 21 million Chinese goods have been recalled in recent months, prompting calls in the US for much tougher scrutiny of Chinese imports.

Mattel, the toy manufacturer whose products have been at the centre of recent safety scares, is not involved in the latest recall.

The products which have been recalled for excessive lead paint content - legal limits for which were introduced in 1978 - include:

  • 192,000 keychains and 63,000 Halloween tumblers sold by Dollar General Merchandising
  • 150,000 bookmarks and bracelets imported by Antioch Publishing
  • 79,000 Pirates of the Caribbean themed lights imported by Everready Battery Co
  • 35,000 toy blocks imported by Kids II
  • 15,000 toy decorating sets made by CKI Toys and imported by Toys R Us
  • 10,000 wooden toys sold by KB Toys
  • 11,200 water bottles imported by Sports Authority

The baby rattles being recalled are sold by Target.

The US Consumer Product Safety Commission said the rattles could break open and that babies could potentially choke on the parts.

But it stressed that no such incidents had occurred.

US watchdogs and firms such as Mattel have been criticised for not informing the public quickly enough about recent product scares, claims they have refuted.

The product recalls have caused anger in Washington, with one Senator telling a Congressional hearing into the issue last month that the problems threatened China's reputation as a global manufacturer.

However, Mattel has since said that design flaws in its own products, rather than the negligence of Chinese sub-contractors, were responsible for many of the problems.

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