U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
Recall Date: April 11, 2013
Six Retailers Announce Recall of Buckyballs and Buckycubes High-Powered Magnet Sets Due to Ingestion Hazard
WASHINGTON, D.C.—The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), in cooperation with six retailers, is announcing the voluntary recall of all Buckyballs and Buckycubes high-powered magnet sets sold by these companies. CPSC is warning that these products contain defects in the design, warnings and instructions, which pose a substantial risk of injury and death to children and teenagers.
Made by Maxfield & Oberton LLC, of New York, N.Y., Buckyballs and Buckycubes consist of sets of numerous, small, high-powered magnets. These sets vary in the number of magnets included and come in a variety of colors. Individual magnets in the set are about 5 millimeters in diameter. Individual magnets in Buckyballs are spherical and individual magnets in Buckycubes are cube-shaped.
About three million sets of Buckyballs and Buckycubes have been sold in U.S. retail stores nationwide and online since 2010 for between $5 and $100.
Consumers should take the high-powered magnet sets and all associated individual magnets away from children and teenagers and contact the retailer from which they purchased the product to obtain instructions for their remedy:
These retailers have agreed to participate because Maxfield & Oberton is unable or unwilling to participate in the recall of all Buckyballs and Buckycubes.
In May 2010, CPSC and Maxfield & Oberton announced a joint recall of about 175,000 high-powered magnet sets under the brand name Buckyballs because they failed to meet the toy standard. Maxfield and Oberton continued to sell the product with modified warnings and the label "For children 14+" until December, 2012.
At the time of the 2010 recall, CPSC was aware of two reports of children ingesting one or more magnets from this product. Since the 2010 recall, despite new warnings and an age recommendation of 14+, CPSC has received an additional 52 reports of children and teens ingesting this product, with 51 of these requiring medical interventions.
In July 2012, CPSC staff filed an administrative complaint against Maxfield & Oberton Holdings LLC, of New York, N.Y., after discussions with the company and its representatives failed to result in a voluntary recall plan that CPSC staff considered to be adequate. This type of legal action against a company is rare, as CPSC has only filed four administrative complaints in the past 11 years.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is still interested in receiving incident or injury reports that are either directly related to this product recall or involve a different hazard with the same product. Please tell us about your experience with the product on SaferProducts.gov.
CPSC is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with the use of the thousands of consumer products under the agency's jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries, and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $900 billion annually. CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical, or mechanical hazard. CPSC's work to ensure the safety of consumer products—such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters, and household chemicals—contributed to a decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 30 years.
To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury, go online to: SaferProducts.gov, call CPSC's Hotline at (800) 638-2772 or teletypewriter at (301) 595-7054 for the hearing and speech impaired. Consumers can obtain this news release and product safety information at http://cpsc.gov/. To join a free e-mail subscription list, please go to www.cpsc.gov/Newsroom/Subscribe/.