Lead-tainted cribs should be pulled out of market – EcoWaste
MANILA, Philippines — A watchdog group warned, on Thursday, against cribs coated with lead-based paint, which could expose babies to the toxic metal that would affect brain development.
The EcoWaste Coalition said it found high levels of lead in the decorative yellow-painted balls of two wooden cribs bought from furniture stores in Maypajo, Caloocan City, and Sta. Cruz, Manila.
“Babies may swallow the leaded paint chips or leaded dust through their usual hand-to-mouth behavior,” Thony Dizon, EcoWaste project coordinator, said in a press briefing marking National Children’s Month.
“They may even bite on the lead-painted balls, especially during the teething phase, thus increasing the risk of exposure,” Dizon said.
The crib from Caloocan costing P2,000 has a yellow-coated ball with lead content reaching 7,871 parts per million, while the P1,000 crib from Manila registered 6,938 ppm.
They exceed the 90 ppm maximum allowable limit for lead in paint under the Chemical Control Order for Lead and Lead Compounds of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
Lead was not detected, however, in the blue, red and turquoise colored balls, and the white-coated frame, indicating that lead-safe paints are available.
In a letter sent to Health Secretary Janette Garin, the EcoWaste called for a product recall order of lead-tainted cribs.
Loss of intelligence and shortened attention span are some of the irreversible effects of lead exposure, according to the World Health Organization.
No known level of lead exposure is considered safe since it accumulates in the body, the WHO explains. (With reports from Ria Consuelo Mendoza and Krizia Jamille Yap, Inquirer trainees). SFM
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