North East Lincolnshire Council’s trading standards team are reminding shoppers to make thorough checks when buying fidget spinners.
Fidget Spinners are the latest must-have toy craze for children and while many are probably safe, there is rising concern among regulators over some of the varieties on the market.
Hundreds of fidget spinners have been removed from shop shelves in other parts of the country because of fears they contain dangerous parts.
There are a growing numbers of reports of fidget spinners breaking, with the small parts causing a choking hazard, the batteries becoming loose and being potentially swallowed and even the metals used in the items containing high levels of lead or mercury.
Some spinners include LED lights with lithium-ion batteries, which could cause internal bleeding if ingested.
Others have small parts that can easily pop out, meaning they could be a choking hazard to young children, while some featured a blade with sharp pointed edges.
In some cases there are no contact details for the manufacturer or importer on the toy, meaning they could not be quickly recalled if necessary.
Trading standards manager Neil Clark said: “Fidget spinners are toys, and should be tested and packaged as such.
“For businesses, as with all products you are selling, you need to make sure they comply with all relevant legislation. This is your responsibility.
“Due to the sheer volume and variety of fidget spinners on the market, it’s difficult to state categorically and definitively that fidget spinners are safe or unsafe.
“However, due to the popularity of these products, and the potential profit being made by manufacturers, the temptation to cut corners is huge and some of them are clearly going to be less well made than others.”
Cllr David Bolton, portfolio holder for safer communities and public protection at North East Lincolnshire Council, added: “Anyone buying a fidget spinner should buy it from a reputable trader and make sure the safety warnings can be clearly seen on the packaging.
“You should check whether the toy or the packaging has a CE mark, whether the name and address of the manufacturer is on the packaging and that it contains a type, batch, serial or model number.
“Spinners without these three marks are technically non-compliant with the legislation and although not necessarily unsafe, without them, you should have serious concerns as to whether the product is genuine and had been safety checked.”
If you wish to report any safety concerns to Trading Standards do so in confidence to trading standards via www.nelincs.gov.uk using the ‘report it’ function, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Citizens Advice consumer service on 03454 040506.