@HealthCanada Advises Caution When Selling or Buying Products at #garagesale

OTTAWA, May 15, 2012 /CNW/ -

The issue:
Health Canada is reminding you to put safety ahead of savings and to use caution when buying or selling items at garage sales or second-hand stores, particularly if they are intended for use by children.

Who is affected:

This advisory is targeted at people who buy consumer products at garage sales or second-hand stores.

What sellers and buyers should do:
  • Stay informed about product recalls, advisories and important regulatory changes. To find out if a product has been recalled by the manufacturer and for information on corrective action, please contact the manufacturer, importer or retailer or check Health Canada's Consumer Product Recall database.
  • Carefully inspect all products to ensure they are not damaged, cracked, have missing or loose parts, or missing instructions.
  • If you have a prohibited product, such as a baby walker, Health Canada advises you to destroy the item to prevent its future use, and to dispose of it in accordance with municipal and other applicable requirements.

What Health Canada is doing:
To assist buyers and sellers, Health Canada has released two publications: a booklet entitled Information for Shoppers of Second-Hand Products; and a fact sheet, Facts for Garage Sale Vendors. The booklet and the fact sheet contain information about the health and safety requirements of products such as: cribs, children's sleepwear, toys, children's jewellery, window blinds, hockey helmets, and face protectors, as well as information on products that are banned in Canada.

Background: On June 20, 2011, the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act (CCPSA) came into force. Its purpose is to protect the public by addressing and preventing dangers to human health or safety that are posed by consumer products in Canada. There is no distinction under the CCPSA and its regulations between new and used products. Any person who sells, distributes, or gives away consumer products that do not comply with the Act or its current regulations is breaking the law in Canada.

Products affected:

Buyers and sellers are urged to exercise caution regarding all consumer products, but Health Canada is warning consumers about the following products, in particular:

Cribs, Cradles and Bassinets
Cribs, cradles and bassinets that do not meet stringent regulatory requirements can pose a health hazard to infants and young children.

Health Canada does not recommend using cribs older than 10 years, as they are more likely to have broken, worn, loose or missing parts, and be missing warnings or instructions. Cribs made before September 1986 likely do not meet current regulatory requirements and therefore should not be sold or bought.

Cribs, cradles and bassinets should be carefully inspected for visible signs of damage, such as loose or missing parts or tears in the fabric. They must include, at the time of sale: information that identifies the manufacturer, model name and number, date of manufacture, instructions for assembling and using the product, as well as warning statements. For information, please visit the Health Canada website on how to select a crib or cradle.

Corded Window Coverings
Health Canada does not recommend selling or buying second-hand corded window coverings because safety devices, warning labels, and instructions to keep pull cords out of the reach of children are often missing. Children can strangle on cords and bead chains of blinds and curtains. Looped cords and long pull cords can wrap around a child's neck and act like a noose.

Costume Jewellery
Lead and cadmium are soft, inexpensive metals often used in the making of costume jewellery. Both are highly toxic, even at low levels of exposure, and especially to children.  Do not give young children jewellery to wear or play with. If your child has sucked or chewed on jewellery which you think may contain lead or cadmium, ask your doctor to test your child's blood for lead or other heavy metals.

Car Seats
It is important to note that car seats or booster seats made before January 1, 2012 may not meet the latest requirements set out by Health Canada and Transport Canada; therefore, you may not be able to advertise, sell or give it away (including lending). Before selling or giving away a used car seat check with Transport Canada (1-800-333-0371 or the Transport Canada website) for more information and to find out if the car seat meets the latest requirements or has been recalled. Buyers should also be aware that a second-hand car seat should not be used if it was installed in a vehicle involved in a collision.

For more information:

Consumers and health professionals wanting more information about this advisory from Health Canada can contact the Public Enquiries Line at 613-957-2991, or toll free at 1-866-225-0709.

Media enquiries related to this Advisory should be directed to Health Canada Media Relations at 613-957-2983.

How to report problems with consumer products:
Health Canada encourages consumers to report incidents (health and safety complaints or injuries) related to any consumer product or cosmetic, including second-hand consumer products. To report a health or safety related incident with a consumer product, visit Health Canada's new on-line incident reporting form available on Health Canada's website.

Related Health Canada Web content:

If you're planning on holding or visiting a garage sale in your neighbourhood, watch Health Canada's Garage Sale video for some helpful hints or visit the Health Canada website for more information at the links below:

Stay connected with Health Canada and receive the latest advisories and product recalls using these social media tools: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/home-accueil/sm-ms/index-eng.php

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Video with caption: "Video: @HealthCanada Advises Caution When Selling or Buying Products at #garagesale". Video available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/cgi-bin/playback.cgi?file=20120515_C7294_VIDEO_EN_13687.mp4&posterurl=http://photos.newswire.ca/images/20120515_C7294_PHOTO_EN_13687.jpg&clientName=Health%20Canada&caption=Video%3A%20%40HealthCanada%20Advises%20Caution%20When%20Selling%20or%20Buying%20Products%20at%20%23garagesale&title=HEALTH%20CANADA%20%2D%20%40HealthCanada%20Advises%20Caution%20When%20Selling%20or%20Buying%20Products%20at%20%23garagesale&headline=%40HealthCanada%20Advises%20Caution%20When%20Selling%20or%20Buying%20Products%20at%20%23garagesale

SOURCE Health Canada

For further information:

Media Enquiries:
Health Canada
(613) 957-2983

Public Enquiries:
(613) 957-2991
1-866 225-0709

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