Infant Bicycle Helmet Recall Issued Over Magnet Ingestion, Choking Hazards
Nearly 130,000 infant bicycle helmets sold exclusively at Target Stores are being recalled due to the risk that magnets in the chin strap may come loose and be swallowed by young children, posing a choking hazard and risk of intestinal complications that could require emergency removal surgery.
The SCHWINN infant bicycle helmet recall was announced by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) on May 17, following at least three consumer complaints indicating the plastic magnet covering had peeled off, exposing the magnets to the infants.
Although no injuries or incidents of infants swallowing the magnets have been reported, this could pose a serious risk of internal injury as the magnets travel through the body, potentially attracting to each other through internal tissue.
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The recall includes infant bicycle helmets with magnetic no-pinch chin strap buckles made for infants ranging from one to three years old. The helmets and the straps were sold in various colors and designs and have the name brand “SCHWINN” printed across the front.
The helmets were manufactured in China under Pacific Cycle Inc., of Madison, Wisconsin where they were sold exclusively at Target stores and online at www.target.com from January 2014 through April 2016 for between $18 and $25. The CPSC estimates roughly 129,000 helmets were sold across the U.S.
The CPSC is urging customers to remove the helmets from children’s possession immediately due to the potentially life-threatening injuries that could result from an infant swallowing the magnets.
Over the last several years, the CPSC has launched efforts to address the risks associated with small magnets contained in many consumer products, after nearly 3,000 infants, children and teenagers were treated at emergency rooms from 2009 to 2013 for magnet ingestion hazards. The CPSC enacted new performance standards for toy magnets in 2014, requiring magnets to be large enough not to be mouthed and swallowed by a young child and the power of the magnetic force must be lower than a specified measure.
According to the CPSC, 22 magnet ingestions were reported between 2009 and 2011, with 11 requiring surgical removal due to the children swallowing more than one. When a child swallows more than one magnet, the magnets will attract to one another internally, often causing intestines to twist, create blockages and tear intestinal walls, requiring emergency surgery to remove and repair damages. The surgical removal of magnets is extremely dangerous and can result in severe life-long problems or death.
Initial symptoms associated with swallowing the small magnets may be similar to that of a common flu, consisting of vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach pain, causing the problems not to be promptly recognized until certain medical examinations are done, further delaying treatment and allowing the magnets to attract.
Customers are being asked to take the helmets away from children immediately and contact Pacific Cycle at 877-564-2261 or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org for instructions on how to receive a free replacement helmet.
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