Toymaker RC2, the makers of Thomas & Friends toy trains amongst other toys, has agreed to pay $30 million to settle a class action lawsuit resulting from last years toy recalls. Between June and September the company recalled over 1.7 million toys due to the use of lead paint in many of their toys. This was the first recall to raise substantial public awareness and concern about lead paint in toys. Dozens of other recalls would soon follow creating a considerable concern from American consumers about the safety of toys. Most of the recalled toys were made in China and this spawned a public outcry for higher quality standards for foreign made toys.
The agreement calls for cash reimbursement for recalled toys or the consumer can elect for a replacement toy and bonus toy. Coupons are being offered to affected customers with no toy or proof of purchase.
Since the recall most toymakers, including RC2, have stepped up testing and quality control standards to ensure product safety.
Mattel and other toymakers face similar lawsuits over their toy recalls. Organizations like the Toy Industry Association have asked Congress to mandate safety testing, which is now voluntary. The end goal here is to establish standards that exceed a level of toy safety that consumers would consider acceptable.
For more information on mthis subject, please refer to the section on Defective and Dangerous Products.