Mattel on Aug. 14 announced it was recalling more than 18 million Chinese-made toys worldwide, including nine million in the U.S., citing injuries to at least three children who swallowed small magnets that had broken loose. "Mattel is recalling 18.2 million magnetic toys globally, 9.5 million in the U.S.," the company said.
The recall affected "certain dolls, figures, play sets and accessories that may release small, powerful magnets," the statement said. All the toys were manufactured in China, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
"The recall expands upon Mattel's voluntary recall of eight toys in November 2006 and is based on a thorough internal review of all Mattel's brands," Mattel said. Among the recalled products were 7.3 million Polly Pocket play sets. Mattel recalled 4.4 million Polly Pocket play sets in November after receiving 170 reports of magnets becoming dislodged. If swallowed, the magnets could attract each other and cause intestinal perforation, infection or blockage, which can be fatal.
"There had been three reports of serious injuries to children who swallowed more than one magnet," the CPSC and Mattel said in a joint statement. "All three suffered intestinal perforations that required surgery," the statement said.
Since the previous recall, more than 400 reports of magnets coming loose have been received by the Mattel.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2007