January 11, 2007

Drawstrings Again!

The consumer product safety commission issued another product recall for sweatshirts sized 8-12 with drawstrings in the hoods. These sweatshirts were sold in Ross and Gordman stores. Customers who have purchased them should remove the drawstrings immediately. In all, there were 12 recalls for drawstrings in 2006.

At this point, I am just plain annoyed. The drawstring guideline (links to a pdf) has been around since 1996! We have had 11 years to learn not to put drawstrings in children's clothing. The recalls are occurring in the same types of products and even in the same stores repeatedly. I blame the designers. I blame the manufacturers. I blame the buyers. Shame on them. They should all know better.

In another recall, Samara is recalling two-piece overall sets because the snaps contain lead. The CPSC is working on creating a rule about metal jewelry for children that contain lead. The proposed rule will ban "children’s metal jewelry that has more than 0.06 percent of total lead" Once adopted this rule will certainly apply to any metal components found on clothing, including snaps and zipper pulls. There were four additional recalls for lead in December alone. The CPSC is aggressively enforcing this rule now, even though it has not been officially adopted.

Macy's is recalling outfits because of snaps that detach and pose a choking hazard. See Kai Run, of Woodinville, Wash, is recalling children's boots for the same reason.

Just as an observation, much of the above recalled product was manufacted in China. Manufactured Chinese product may be more or less safe than product made in the USA. Certainly, there are some shady manufacturers (US and Chinese) who send approval samples and test results that pass, and then turn around and use different components. Manufacturing overseas is no excuse for ignoring safety guidelines.

Let's make 2007 a safer year for children's clothing products.

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