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Adult Stress Relief Magnets Pose a Serious Risk to Kids

Our Chicago personal injury lawyers were troubled to hear of recent reports indicating that stress-relieving office toys may be a potentially fatal hazard to children.

According to a report by the Chicago Tribune, federal regulators are warning parents that magnet beads, like those found in Magnetix Building Sets, are a deadly threat to children. The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission released a statement saying that they have received 17 reports since 2009 in which these small pellets were swallowed by children; of those 17 cases, 11 required surgery to remove the magnets from the child’s system.

When children ingest these high-powered magnets, the magnets attract to each other inside the body, which may lead to blockages in the digestion system, small holes in the walls of the lining of the stomach and intestines, blood poisoning, and other potentially fatal injuries.

In 2008, a federal toy standard was passed prohibiting small magnets from games and toys marketed for children under the age of 14. Nevertheless, when small, loose magnets are included as components in products intended for adults, children may still be able to access the dangerous parts and swallow them.

Unquestionably it is the responsibility of the parents to keep these dangerous items away from, and out of reach of small children. However, an important aspect of Illinois products liability law is the notion that companies may be held liable for injuries that occur when they put a dangerous product on the market. Corporations are expected to test their merchandise for safety prior to distributing it to the public; if a company either negligently puts a dangerous product up for sale, or markets a product that they know is dangerous but fails to warn consumers of the potential hazard involved, those companied may be liable for damages caused by their unsafe merchandise.

The Chicago Tribune reports that the federal safety agency is advising parents to keep magnets away from young children and to seek medical attention immediately if a magnet is swallowed. Even so, if a child swallows the magnet, the injuries caused may be severe and irreparable, and in the worst cases lead to death.

Our Illinois personal injury attorneys have handled numerous products liability cases, and understand the emotional and physical trauma that victims and their families suffer. We are very proud of the changes that the efforts of our attorneys have brought, in this area.

In many instances, our attorneys have not only recovered substantial verdicts and settlements on behalf of our clients and their families, but have also helped to ensure that the defective or dangerous product was removed from the market, prevented from causing any further pain, suffering, and damage.

In an Illinois products liability case brought by our personal injury attorneys, our lawyers recovered a $3 million settlement against a car manufacturer of a vehicle that improperly designed the fuel delivery system of a vehicle, resulting in a fuel-fed fire after a head-on collision which killed the occupants of the vehicle.

If you or a loved one have suffered injury as a result of a company’s dangerous or defective product, you don’t have to suffer alone. Contact an attorney immediately to better understand your rights under the law. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.