Keeping kids safe from dangerous imports

Customs checks found 20 percent of imported children's clothing fail safety checks.

Shanghai Customs found more than 20 percent of imported children’s clothes failed quality tests between January and May.

The main problems included poor color fastness, over-long straps and loose-fitting accessories. Those with problems will be returned or destroyed.

By May, officers had tested 1,478 batches of imported children’s clothes and 331 failed the test, customs officials say.

To test if straps are too long and may cause risks such as suffocation, customs officers used dummies to simulate scenes such as straps getting stuck when kids close a car door or cabinet door, or go down a slide in a park.

Customs says the dyes and heavy metals in clothes with poor color fastness can damage children’s skin and pose a health danger if taken in through saliva or sweat.

In other cases, some accessories were not properly fastened to clothes, which meant kids could pull them off and eat them.

Officials are using a range of measures to protect consumers, including big data.

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