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Consumer Testing Group Finds Widespread Contamination


By the end of 2015, the European Union will be changing the standard for certain chemicals in consumer products including children's toys. The  standard for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which are also found in pavement sealers, will be 0.5 parts per million.

Last week a German testing firm released the test results from 30 different plush toys which included teddy bears, rabbits and lions. Over 60% of toys had levels of PAHs which were deemed "critical." This family of chemicals frequently enters toys in dyes or plasticizers and may be from their origins from petroleum or coal refining.

The EU's main concern here is dermal contact with the contaminated products. PAHs are absorbed through the skin, so you don't have to breath it or eat it to get exposed.

Washing the toys didn't seem to lower the PAH content either. After three washings, the PAHs barely changed.

Most interesting was the fact that the country of origin did not have an effect on the risk of toy contamination. The comparisons were for products primarily made in Europe and China.

Pavement Sealer Linkage

What does this have to do with coal tar pavement sealers?

A lot. We have shown many instances of children kneeling, laying, sitting and playing on coal tar sealed driveways and playgrounds. The same kind of contact with hands and feets and knees and elbows which made researchers question the safety of plush toys.

We did an entire video demonstrating how to detect this exposure which is also used in Europe and in chemical spills in the US.

And according to toxicologists merely coming into contact with a coal tar surface is exposure.

So here's the comparison. If I could shout it loud enough for you to hear me, then I would.

EU Standard for PAH in Toys:                         0.5 ppm

Average PAH Content in Coal Tar Sealer: 70,000 ppm!!


So if someone in their wisdom thinks 0.5 ppm is a threshold for consumer product safety, then what are we doing about the safety of our children when we allow our children to be exposed to materials over 100,000 times more concentrated than what is legal in Europe? Very little.

What can you do about it? Go to our Action page and find out.

Photo from Pixabay and is not intended to imply this particular stuffed toy is problematic, but illustrate a look of concern regarding the overall findings.

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