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Re: dangers of mini blinds


Date: Tue Jul 10 2001 - 06:45:02 PDT

Do all mini-blinds contain lead?
No, only vinyl mini-blinds imported from Mexico and Asia. Aluminum blinds
have not been known to have lead. How can you get poisoned from these blinds?
By chewing on the blinds, or by touching the lead dust accumulated on the
blinds, then touching your contaminated hand to your mouth. How does lead
dust get on the blinds?
Through prolonged exposure to direct sunlight, the blinds deteriorate and the
lead is released (leeches out) in tiny particles. How can I tell if mine are
vinyl or aluminum?
Scrape the blinds with a knife and if the paint comes off, they're metal. If
the mark remains the same color, it's probably vinyl. Or, tap the blinds with
a metal object such as a knife and listen to the sound. Third, the slats can
be inspected at their edges-if the color is the same as the top and bottom of
the slat it probably is vinyl. If the color is bright aluminum it is not
vinyl. Fourth, the brackets holding the blind are usually easily determined
to be either vinyl or metal. Which brands contain lead?
Check the label on the box or call the store where you bought them to see if
they were imported. The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has
announced that ALL imported vinyl mini-blinds contain lead. If the blinds
were there before you arrived, then have them tested or replace them with
another product. Who is most susceptible to lead poisoning?
Children under the age of six and small pets, because they tend to chew and
touch the blinds. What should I do if my blinds have lead?
Carefully clean them with a high phosphate soap, such as the type used in
dishwashers. When cleaning them, bring them outside and rinse thoroughly.
Never vacuum them as this will cause the dust to spread throughout the home.
Permanently remove the blinds and replace them if possible. Keep small
children and pets away from the blinds. Keep cribs and furniture away from
the blinds. Get blood tests for your children, even if they appear to be
healthy. Wash children's' hands, bottles, pacifiers, and toys often. Are
there any home testing kits available to test the blinds?
Yes, and if yours test positive you should have them tested further by a
certified lab to determine if the amount of lead is dangerous. What are the
symptoms of lead poisoning?
Symptoms include anemia, hearing loss, hyperactivity, limited attention span,
behavioral problems or learning disabilities. Even small amounts of lead can
harm a child's brain, kidneys, and stomach. What is the Residential
Lead-based Paint Hazard Reduction Act of 1992 (Title X, Section 1018)?
It is a new disclosure law requiring notice of the presence of lead when
selling certain dwellings built before 1978.