Federal agency orders recall of dangerous magnetic ball sets sold

Federal agency orders recall of dangerous magnetic ball sets sold at Walmart.com

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal agency on Friday recalled toys sold at Walmart.com that contain powerful magnetic balls that could pose a danger to children if swallowed.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission said the 5-millimeter (0.2-inch) diameter balls exceed federal standards for magnet strength and could clump together and block parts of the digestive system if swallowed.

The commission said no injuries have been reported from the use of this particular product, called Relax 5mm Science Kit. It contained 216 small, multi-colored magnetic balls with what the CPSC described as “strong magnetic flux.”

The agency said ingested magnets could stick to each other or other metal objects, potentially causing perforation, twisting and/or blockage of the intestines, infection, blood poisoning and death.

The CPSC estimates that 2,400 people were treated in hospital emergency rooms for ingesting magnets between 2017 and 2021, and said the agency was aware of seven deaths related to ingesting dangerous magnets, including two outside the United States

The magnet set was sold on Walmart.com by Joybuy Marketplace Express, a unit of Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com. As of this afternoon Eastern Time, the kits were no longer visible on Walmart.com.