Consumer Reports (CR), the independent, non-profit member organization, welcomes the opportunity to submit comments to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) regarding the agency’s notice of proposed rulemaking to establish a mandatory safety standard for magnets. CR supported the CPSC’s 2014 safety standard that regulated small high-powered magnet sets. The rule was appropriate given the risks the magnets pose to children and teenagers. We commend the agency for again proposing a rule that would establish a mandatory safety standard for magnet products.
Sufficient data exist to demonstrate that high-powered magnets present a serious hazard. In the time since the CPSC’s previous safety standard was vacated, researchers have observed a significant increase in magnet ingestions among children, and concluded that rises in magnet-related injuries correlate to time periods in which high-powered magnets are on the market. Further, though these products are marketed for use by those 14 years of age and older, magnet-related injuries have increased across all age groups, and many of these injuries are life threatening. It is clear that the agency’s previous rule was working to protect children, and that a strong rule is needed now. Accordingly, Consumer Reports fully supports the CPSC’s proposed rule, and urges the agency to finalize it expeditiously.
For CR’s full comments to the CPSC on the proposed safety standard for magnets, click here.