When parents think of hidden dangers in their home, they rarely (if ever) consider… crayons?! But a consumer interest group — the U.S. Public Interest Research Group Education Fund — is warning parents to do just that. The group recently discovered that some green crayons packaged and sold under the name Playskool Crayons contained tremolite, a type of asbestos.
“The good news is that when we were testing [school supplies] three years ago, all sorts of brands came back with asbestos. Now it’s just this one,” U.S. PIRG explained to CBS News. However, this information isn’t reassuring to parents who may already have these products in their homes.
Hasbro, who owns Playskool Crayons, is taking the report very seriously.
“Product and children’s safety are top priorities for Hasbro. We are conducting a thorough investigation into these claims, including working with Leap Year, the licensee of the product,” Hasbro’s Julie Duffy, senior vice president of global communications, said in a statement to People.
A spokesman for Leap Year stated, “[C]onsumer safety is most important to Leap Year” and noted that the company “take[s] these matters very seriously." However, the company also pointed out that the crayons in question had passed internal reviews.
When Playskool Crayons were lab tested, they “passed all regulatory requirements and had no detectable asbestos."
And a spokesman for Dollar Tree — where the tested product was sold — told People that in order to be on their stores shelves the products underwent secondary (and similar) testing.
“The safety of our customers and associates is our top priority," the Dollar Tree rep said. "Our Company utilizes a very stringent and independent testing program to ensure our supplier products meet or exceed all safety and legal standards. We are aware of the report and have since re-verified that each of the listed products successfully passed inspection and testing.”
Playskool Crayons are sold through multiple retailers, including Amazon, eBay and Dollar Tree.
While U.S. PIRG has requested a recall of the crayons, the Consumer Product Safety Commission has not yet issued one.