Magnetic pens are deemed a hazard by authorities, while relevant standards are pending
Magnetic pens sold on e-commerce sites and short video sites have potential safety hazards for children, Shanghai's market watchdog warned on Thursday.
The pens with magnetic parts, that can change shapes randomly, gained popularity on short video platforms and are played with like "toys" by children, officials with the Shanghai Administration for Market Regulation said.
However, there is no standard regulating the pens so far, thus a quality safety risk assessment of the emerging products was conducted by the administration.
In total, 16 batches of the pens sold on douyin, JD.com, Pinduoduo, Xiaohongshu and Tmall were tested, and all were found to have high magnetic flux, according to the administration.
Magnetic parts with high magnetic flux could lead to intestinal obstruction or perforation if they are swallowed by children, it said.
The design of the caps of 15 batches of pens will probably cause suffocation if they are swallowed.
Businesses should mark the applicable age of the pens and warning signs on their packages in a noticeable place, the administration ordered.
They should also enhance risk management and control of their supply chain, it said.
Officials said they are conducting research on relevant standards.