Office Of The Attorney General Issues Safety Warning: Lead In Wal Mart Baby Bibs
NEW YORK, NY (May 2, 2007) In conjunction with a safety alert issued by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission ("CPSC") today the Office of the Attorney General announced the results of its tests of certain baby bibs sold by retail giant Wal‑Mart Stores, Inc. The Office’s testing found high levels of lead in bibs purchased at Wal‑Mart stores in New York, posing a potential safety concern for babies and young children who use them.
The bibs, which were sold by Wal‑Mart since 2004 under the brand name "Baby Connection" are made with Polyvinyl Chloride ("PVC") or vinyl. The bibs came in 2‑packs and 7‑packs. The bibs have colorful designs, some but not all with Sesame Street characters. They have either a vinyl front with a cloth backing or a cloth front with vinyl backing. The highest levels of lead were found in bibs which have a tag sewn into their lining that contains their UPC numbers:
The Office of the Attorney General commends the CPSC for issuing their safety alert raising the public’s awareness about the dangers of worn baby bibs containing lead. At the same time, the Office warns consumers who have the identified bibs in their homes to consider discarding the bibs to protect their babies and children from unnecessary cumulative lead exposure. The matter was brought to the attention of the Attorney General by the Center for Environmental Health (CEH) in California.
As a result of the joint New York and Illinois effort, Wal‑Mart has agreed to take the following important actions:
1. Stop the sale of the identified bibs from all Wal‑Mart stores as of March 29, 2007, and refrain indefinitely from selling the identified bibs in the states of New York, Illinois and California;
2. Proceed as soon as possible with a plan to refrain from selling baby bibs which are made with PVCs;
3. Support the development of a voluntary industry standard, in cooperation with the CPSC, the New York and Illinois Attorney General Offices and others, to eliminate PVCs from all products intended for use by children.
The adverse health effects of lead poisoning in children are well‑documented including: neurological damage, delayed mental and physical development, attention and learning deficiencies, and hearing problems. Because lead accumulates in the body, even exposures to small amounts of lead can contribute to the overall level of lead in the blood and to the risk of adverse health effects. Therefore, any unnecessary exposure of children to lead should be avoided.
This matter was handled by Assistant Attorney General Joy Feigenbaum of the Bureau of Consumer Frauds & Protection and Assistant Attorney General Marie Chery-Sekobo and Chief Scientist Michael Surgan of the Bureau of Environmental Protection.