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Retailers, not importer, recall Buckyballs and Buckycubes high-powered magnet sets due to ingestion hazard

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with six retailers, is announcing the voluntary recall of all Buckyballs and Buckycubes high-powered magnet sets sold by these companies.

Buckyballs LARGEThe commission continues to warn that these products contain defects in the design, warnings, and instructions, which pose a substantial risk of injury and death to children and teenagers.

The commission has received 54 reports of children and teens ingesting this product, with 53 of these requiring medical interventions.

Imported by Maxfield & Oberton LLC, Buckyballs and Buckycubes consist of sets of numerous, small, high-powered magnets. These sets vary in the number of magnets included and come in a variety of colors. Individual magnets in the set are about 5 millimeters in diameter. Individual magnets in Buckyballs are spherical and individual magnets in Buckycubes are cube-shaped.

About three million sets of Buckyballs and Buckycubes have been sold in U.S. retail stores nationwide and online since 2010 for between $5 and $100. 

The commission is advising consumers that they should take the high-powered magnet sets and all associated individual magnets away from children and teenagers and contact the retailer from which they purchased the product to obtain instructions for a remedy:

  • Bed Bath & Beyond at 800-462-3966 or online at www.bedbathandbeyond.com and select “Safety and Recalls” under Customer Service, then click on Recall Information.
  • Brookstone at 866-576-7337 or online at www.brookstone.com and click on “Recall Information” under Shop Brookstone.

These retailers have agreed to participate because Maxfield & Oberton has refused to participate in the recall of all Buckyballs and Buckycubes, the commission said. 

In July 2012, the commission staff filed an administrative complaint against Maxfield & Oberton Holdings LLC after discussions with the company and its representatives failed to result in a voluntary recall plan that the commission staff considered to be adequate to address the serious hazard posed by these products.

This type of legal action against a company is rare, as the commission has filed only four administrative complaints in the past 11 years.

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