On the front of the box for the Fidget Wild Fidget Spinner is a warning: The toy is best for youths 14 years old or older.
Actually, the product isn't even classified as a toy, allowing it to circumvent some more rigorous testing necessary for playthings for younger kids, according to the nonprofit consumer group, the Empire State Consumer Project, or ESCP, which each year warns of possibly dangerous toys around the holiday season.
ESCP testing on the particular spinning fidget showed it with high levels of lead, which would be dangerous for younger children possibly inclined to put the item in their mouths, ESCP President Judy Braiman said Thursday at a news conference.
"What's shocking to us is the labeling (and) how they're getting away with it," she said.
Some stores have taken the particular fidget away from shelves with similar items for children, she said. The ECSP plans to file a formal petition with the Consumer Product Safety Commission challenging the product's labeling, contending it should be tested as a toy for younger children, Braiman said.
Thursday marked the 46th annual "child safety press conference" from the ECSP.
Among other warnings were:
• The hazards of dressers tipping over on young children. Products are available to strap dressers to screws on a wall.
• Silk-screened children's clothing, which can contain lead.
• Metal jewelry from China, which can also contain significant lead levels.
• Crib bumpers that can lead to suffocation.
ESCP director Carol Chittenden also warned of other possible hazards, such as the continuing use of the pesticide Roundup. The Project years ago succeeded in getting schools to scrutinize the use of pesticides, but now wants towns to also look at whether it uses the chemicals on sports playing fields, Braiman said.