UK & World News

  • 8 December 2012, 2:37

Chinese Made Rubber Ducks Seized At US Port

US Customs and Border Protection officers in Southern California have seized nearly 36,000 Chinese rubber ducks that contain levels of a chemical that may be harmful for children.

The ducks - decorated as Santas, Snowmen and other holiday figures - were seized by officers and import specialists at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

The customs agency said that it worked with the US Consumer Products Safety Commission in determining that the ducks contain an excessive level of a regulated phthalate, a chemical used to make vinyl and plastics soft and flexible.

The rubber ducks were valued at more than $18,000 (11,200).

Chinese manufactured toys have come under heavy scrutiny in recent years. In November last year, a study conducted by Greenpeace and IPEN found that 32.6% of toys tested were tainted.

Studies determined one in three toys - purchased in Chinese cities - contained heavy metals, and that one in 10 contained excessive levels of lead.

In 2007, the world's biggest toy maker Mattel was forced to recall more than 800,000 of its Barbie-related products manufactured in China due to high levels of lead paint.

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