Public warned vs. Halloween costumes without product labels

Friday, October 28th, 2016. Filed under: Destinations Halloween Lifestyle News World News
At a press conference in Quezon City on Friday, October 21, 2016, Ecowaste Coalition volunteers warn consumers about dangerous chemicals present in some Halloween masks and toys. The group urges the public to check if the products passed safety standards before buying them. (MNS photo)

At a press conference in Quezon City on Friday, October 21, 2016, Ecowaste Coalition volunteers warn consumers about dangerous chemicals present in some Halloween masks and toys. The group urges the public to check if the products passed safety standards before buying them. (MNS photo)

MANILA, Oct 22 (Mabuhay) — Keep the horror fake and yourself safe this Halloween season.

Environmental watchdog EcoWaste Coalition on Friday about a real horror: exposing oneself to possible health hazards  by purchasing costumes or props without proper product labels.

Improper labeling could lead to possible chemical, choking, fire, and laceration hazards.

The group inspected 115 Halloween-oriented products and found that 35 of these products did not come with a label.

“Of the 80 items that provided varying degrees of labeling information, only one — a “Glow in the Dark” devil sickle — indicated the name and contact details of the manufacturer or distributor and its license to operate (LTO) number, the product’s model number, age grade and usage instruction, and relevant cautionary statements,” EcoWaste said.

“Companies are required to apply for license to operate and product notification before placing toys and childcare articles (TCCA) in the market. Unfortunately, many Halloween toys being sold in discount shops where many consumers go have no valid TCCA product notification,” Coordinator of the EcoWaste Coalition’s Project Protect Thony Dizon said.

On their blog, EcoWaste Coalition released information about the toys they inspected:

1. Chemical Hazard: Creepy insect toys may be coated with lead-containing paint and pose chemical risk to their young users.

For instance, the EcoWaste Coalition detected toxic lead in the range of 139 to 481 parts per million (ppm) in 11 out of 32 toy insects screened using a portable X-Ray Fluorescence device.

2. Choking Hazard: Some Halloween costume accessories contain small parts that kids may ingest and cause choking and suffocation. For example, button batteries in devil headbands and other light up toys can come loose and get swallowed by a child.

3. Fire Hazard: Witch hats and horrific masks with hair are a fire risk because of their high flammability. None of the six hats and masks with hair provided fire hazard warning.

4. Laceration Hazard: Toy axes, knives and swords can have sharp edges that can damage or injure a child’s sensitive skin.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has also released an advisory reminding the public to avoid purchasing toys and childcare articles without proper labels and certifications.

In compliance with Republic Act No. 3720 or the Foods, Drugs and Devices,and Cosmetics Act, toy products must include the following information on their packing: LTO number issued by FDA; Age grade;Cautionary statements/ warnings; Instructional literature; Item/ Model/SKU No. of the product; and Manufacturer’s marking where the complete name and address of the manufacturer or distributor is reflected. (MNS)

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