US: Lead toys banned

Following a year of recalls, the US House of Representatives voted to ban lead from toys yesterday.
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The House voted in favour of a bill that would significantly reduce the levels of lead and other potentially dangerous substances from toys and children’s products for under twelves.

The bill follows a high number of recalls over levels of lead in toys including Thomas and Friends wooden toys from companies including RC2 and Mattel.

The law would also included a partial ban on controversial plastic-softening chemicals called phthalates. If passed by the senate, the bill will double funding for product testing with the Consumer Product Safety Commission and testing would become compulsory for many products.

President Bush had previously expressed concern over some of the provisions in the Senate version of the bill and is reviewing the version agreed to by House and Senate negotiators on Monday.

"We do think that the Consumer Product Safety bill moved in our direction a little bit on some of the issues that we were concerned about," White House Press Secretary Dana Perino said. "That doesn't mean we don't have some concerns that remain."

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