Target is selling fidget spinners that contain toxic levels of lead

Tamara Rubin tests a fidget spinner for lead levels               Tamara Rubin

U.S. PIRG said it sent representatives to five Target stores around the country who found the spinners being sold in the toy department. Fidget Wild Premium Spinner Brass was found to contain 33,000 parts per million at its center, while Fidget Wild Premium Spinner Metal contained 1,300 parts per million, reports the Washington Post.

The legal limit for lead is 100 parts per million.

CBS News reports that the gadgets are being sold in the toy aisles alongside the spinners sold to 6-year-olds.

The consumer group called this an "absurd and unsafe conclusion". The companies say products marketed to those over the age of 12 have no specific lead-level restrictions.

CoPIRGreport that when Target and the toy's distributor, Bulls i Toy, were alerted to the findings, they refused to address the problem.

"Even small amounts of lead in toys can be ingested when transferred from fingers to mouth or from fingers to food", said national lead expert Helen Binns, MD, pediatrician at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago and Professor of Pediatrics at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. The CPSC, Target and Bulls i Toy need to acknowledge the obvious - that all fidget spinners are toys. "All of our product are tested and comply with [Consumer Product Safety Commission] safety standards".

CoPIRG says lead exposure is particularly damaging for young children because of its impact on development.

Fidget spinners are supposed to be calming and fun, especially for students struggling to focus.

The advocacy group says it has notified the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, a federal body, of the high lead levels.

Target did not immediately respond to request for comment.

"The two fidget spinners cited in your letter are clearly marked on the package 'appropriate for customers 14 and older, ' and are not marketed to children", a Target official wrote in an email shared with Business Insider.

U.S. PIRG Toxics Director Kara Cook-Shultz told CBS News that the Target website described the two spinner models for ages "6 and up" on the retailer's website, but the product page now reflects a "14 and older" description.

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