Mattel To Testify In Congressional Hearings

Hearings in the House and Senate are expected to examine the toy manufacturer's dealings with the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Mattel's Chief Executive Robert Eckert is expected to testify in separate congressional hearings the next two weeks about procedures the company used to alert federal regulators about major recalls.
In just more than a month, Mattel Inc., the world's largest toy maker, has announced three major recalls due to concerns about excessive lead paint in the Chinese-made toys.
Hearings in the House and the Senate are expected to examine Mattel's dealings with the Consumer Product Safety Commission, which oversees product safety and recalls, the Wall Street Journal reported Friday.
Lawmakers also are expected to focus on the commission's budget, enforcement practices and record in identifying toys with lead paint and other defects.
At least two members of the commission are also scheduled to testify.
A Senate Appropriations subcommittee, chaired by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) is slated to hold a hearing Sept. 12, while the commerce, trade and consumer protection subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing Sept. 19, the Journal article said.
Mattel announced Tuesday it was recalling 800,000 toys, including 675,000 accessories for Barbie dolls. Part of that recall included 90,000 units of GeoTrax locomotive line and about 8,900 Big Big World 6-in-1 Bongo Band toys, both sold under the company's Fisher-Price brand name.
The El Segundo, Calif.-based company's second recall was announced Aug. 14 for 19 million toys worldwide. Mattel's first recall involving lead paint was on Aug. 1 for 1.5 million preschool toys featuring characters such as Dora the Explorer, Big Bird and Elmo. That recall involved almost 1 million toys sold in the U.S. between May and August.
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