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More Magnetic Toys Recalled

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Fun ‘n Games Magnetic Dartboards are the latest dangerous magnetic toys subject to a recall. According to the Consumer Products Safety Commission, the magnets on the darts that come with the dartboard can come loose, and could cause severe intestinal injuries if they are swallowed by children.

About 870,000 Fun ‘n Games Magnetic Dartboards distributed by Henry Gordy International Inc., of Plainfield, N.J. are involved in this recall. According to the CPSC, the magnetic dartboards are black, green, blue, and white checkered design, with a red bulls eye. The magnetic dartboards measure about 5 ½ inches wide and were sold with two 2 ¾-inch long magnetic darts. The darts magnetically attract to the dart board. The Fun ‘n Games Magnetic Dartboards were sold at Family Dollar stores nationwide from September 2002 through March 2008 for about $1.

So far, there have been no injuries reported as a result of the defective Fun ‘n Games magnetic dartboards, but consumers have been advised to take the toy away children immediately. The dartboards can be returned first class mail to: Henry Gordy International Inc., 809A Market Street, Hermann, MO 65041 for a full refund including tax and shipping costs. For additional information, consumers should contact Henry Gordy International Inc., at (888) 790-2700 between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. CT Monday through Friday.

Magnet toy sets are considered by many consumer advocates to be among the most dangerous toys on the market. The magnets in these toys are usually high-energy neodymium iron boron magnets. If a child swallows more than one of these powerful magnets, they can be attracted to each other while in the intestinal tract. As a result, the magnets clump together, causing the intestines to twist. This can cause intestinal blockages, bowel perforations and even death.

Magnetix Building Sets were the first magnetic toy sets subject to a large scale recall in 2006, following the death of a toddler who swallowed a magnet that had come loose from its casing. By the time the CPSC issued its first Magnetix recall in 2006, it had received 34 reports of injuries related to the toy, including the fatality. In April 2007, the CPSC expanded the recall to include all Magnetix sets sold before March 2006. By then, injury reports had reached 1,500. Since then, many other companies, including Mattel, have recalled magnetic toy sets. Just last month, more than 2 million other Magnetix toys were recalled, but so far the CPSC has not had received any injury reports related to those products.

The Toy Industry Association addressed the problem last May by drafting a set of voluntary standards for magnetic play sets. Under the new rules, magnets must either be “reliably contained” within a product or the toys must carry a warning label explaining the dangers of ingestion. Unfortunately, some of the magnetic play sets in stores right now were apparently made before those standards took effect.

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