Posts tagged: Aqua Dots

I am Back From Pluto

By , November 8, 2007 12:55 pm

Yet again, I am the last person on the planet to learn of something.

Last night I wrote a post about the latest toy recalls. The extent of my research involved checking the CPSC toy recall page, seeing if we had any of the recalled toys, and cutting and pasting the links to my post. Well, that’ll teach me to not carefully read the recall notices…and to not let my kids make way to much noise during the NPR newscast…and to not toss the newspaper into the recycle bin unread.

I should have read the Aqua Dots recall more closely before simply mentally filing it away as “just another choking hazard.” Not that the recall notice gives the whole story, mind you.

Why do I think I can inform people of the latest news when I myself am as informed about the affairs of Earth as a Martian on sabbatical to Pluto? Anyhow, thanks to a comment on yesterday’s Weekly Lead Paint Post, I have been abruptly brought back from Pluto with a bang and a puff of pink smoke. (Thanks Earthling Karen!).

Here’s the latest toy horror, that you have all heard about already no doubt:

Aqua Dots (“Bindeez Beads” in Australia) have a chemical coating that, when swallowed and metabolized, converts itself to the “date rape” drug GHB (gamma-hydroxy butyrate for any chemists out there). Lovely.

Honestly my first thought was that this was some sort of apocryphal internet rumor like used hypodermic needles dripping with heroin found in McDonald’s ball pits, or spider eggs as the main ingredient of chewing gum. But apparently it is legit. CNN says:

Scientists have found the popular toy’s coating contains a chemical that, once metabolized, converts into the toxic “date rape” drug GHB, or gamma-hydroxy butyrate, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission spokesman Scott Wolfson told CNN.

“GHB is this drug that in low doses actually causes euphoria,” said Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN’s chief medical correspondent. “In higher doses, it can cause people to go into a coma. It can cause seizures. It can cause something known as hypotonia, where all your muscles just become very flaccid.”

Listen to NPR’s stories from today:

Aqua Dots Recall Challenges Consumer Safety in US

and

Toys Recalled for Lead, GHB

What is one to say about this? I am speechless. May I go back to Pluto now please?

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