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Author Topic: Warning sticker on the back of boxes  (Read 7140 times)

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« on: December 30, 2008, 09:39:29 AM »

I noticed on the back of the boxes of the HO and N series train sets, the tracks and individual train cars that there was a small warning label.

It said that a chemical in the product was known to cause cancer, and birth defects and reproductive problems.

What particular chemical is it?  Is it because these things are made in China?

I have an old Sante Fe train set from at least 20 years ago and was thinking to buy a new train set, but after seeing that sticker I changed my mind.

Does anyone know what I am talking about.


James Thomas

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« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2008, 11:21:14 AM »

Just to be safe, don't eat the trains.

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« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2008, 11:27:34 AM »

Matter of fact' Don't even lick'em  Cheesy

Rocky Lives
Jim Banner

Enjoying electric model railroading since 1950.

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« Reply #3 on: December 30, 2008, 11:50:11 AM »

Is that the warning that includes the phrase "known to the state of California to cause cancer?"
I have often wondered why it is known to the state of California and not to the other 49 states.  Or does California require such labeling no matter how small the amount?  I mean we all know that barbecued ribs contain small amounts of cancer causing chemicals as well as excessive amounts of saturated fats and cholesterol, but we eat them anyway.  The air, particularly in cities, contains cancer causing chemicals, but we breathe it anyway.  And our water may contain traces of chemicals known to the state of California to cause cancer but we drink it anyway.  The point is, we try to keep the levels of noxious chemicals in our diets small enough that they do not hurt us.  Our governments set safe limits for a great number of chemicals.   And if those chemicals are below those limits, we generally do not worry about them.  Does California set lower safety limits than the rest of the country or even perhaps have a zero tolerance for them?  I don't know.  But I suspect so, even though it would be like having "Beware of Wolves" signs posted at every border crossing into California because the state of California knows that there are still one or two wild wolves in the state.

Bottom line, you can smoke a cigarette or chew tobacco in California but don't eat the trains.

Growing older is mandatory but growing up is optional.

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« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2008, 11:51:42 AM »

The State of California demands that particular sticker on everything - that way their sticky label industry is kept going during these troubled times.

Modelling BR (W) late 1950's in 4mm 00 and large scale garden using Bachmann and LGB 1:20.3/ 1:22
Terry Toenges

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« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2008, 11:56:07 AM »

Ahhhh.....But how many people buy trains for their children who are known to put things in their mouth?

Feel like a Mogul.

Founded 1922 as Electro-Motive Engineering Company

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« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2008, 02:37:59 PM »

If you read the warning notice in a California parking garage, you risk getting cancer if you park in there.

Lots are OK.

It gives the lawyers in tort law busy.

Electro-Motive Historical Research
(Never employed by EMD at any time)


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« Reply #7 on: December 30, 2008, 03:08:44 PM »

As others have reported, that sticker is put there to comply with the People's Republic of California Proposition 65 requiremnets, which were created by a ballot initiative in 1986. Here is a link to the California State Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (an office set up by that proposition) site that explains it:

This warning is posted at every filling station, in stores of all types, and has now found its way onto packaging for many items that are sold here in California.

An example of how ridiculous this warning is: Earlier this fall, we purchased some biscotti (Italian cookies) at Costco. We really liked them, but the store didn't have any on our next trip, so I looked on line to find another source.

Numerous suppliers had the brand I was looking for, but when I read the entire page of one of them, there was the California Proposition 65 warning at the bottom, with no explanation as to why. I called the manufacturer in Texas and they too were baffled and upset about the warning. They absolutely assured me that there was nothing in their biscotti nor the packaging that would require the warning label.

I wrote the sales site asking about the warning, but they didn't reply. I recently looked at the sales site again, and the warning is still there. On Cookies!

IMHO, this is typical of government out of control, with this particular one being accomplished through California's further out of control initiative system, where any special interest group can get laws passed, mandate funding and create large new organizations that the state has to pay for forever. Just STUPID STUFF done in the name of government.

As to the OP's comment that he will just use his original train rather that purchasing a new one, I would point out that the original train was made from the same stuff and has the same chemical content as the new one. Will you forego purchasing gasoline? The warning is posted right there on the front of every California filling station and in many cases it is pasted directly on the pump.

And Dr. EMD is correct that the warning is also posted on every parking garage and lot.

Rant Complete.

Happy RRing,

« Last Edit: December 30, 2008, 03:19:13 PM by JerryB » Logged

Sequoia Pacific RR in 1:20 / 70.6mm
Boonville Light & Power Co. in 1:20 / 45mm
Navarro Engineering & Construction Co. in 1:20 / 32mm
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CNE Runner

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« Reply #8 on: December 30, 2008, 03:43:55 PM »

Many years ago I had a college summer job in a factory that produced envelopes. This was a very old building, in dire need of repair (the roof leaked like a sieve) which was inhabited by humans during the day and many members of the rodent community after dark. To this day I do NOT lick envelopes to seal them! Hmmm, I wonder how many times I've held a train part in my mouth whilst working on a car?

« Last Edit: December 30, 2008, 03:46:59 PM by CNE Runner » Logged

"Keeping my hand on the throttle...and my eyes on the rail"
« Reply #9 on: December 30, 2008, 04:32:46 PM »

Well, if your not sure, boil it Cheesy

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« Reply #10 on: December 30, 2008, 07:48:00 PM »

Well, if your not sure, boil it Cheesy
Well if the ban on Dihydrogen-Monoxide passes in California, you won't even be able to do that!
Yes, there were really petitions being circulated and getting signatures to do just that!
for more info;
« Last Edit: December 30, 2008, 07:53:34 PM by r0bert » Logged

« Reply #11 on: December 30, 2008, 08:10:50 PM »

Man, they got a whole bunch of people a french fry short of a big mac.

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« Reply #12 on: December 30, 2008, 08:53:36 PM »

To All who have forgotten all of their Chemistry .Dihydrogen - Monoxide  or Hydrogen - Hydroxide is  H2O or water in colloquial  English .

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« Reply #13 on: December 30, 2008, 09:17:34 PM »

Yes--that Dihydrogen Monoxide is scary stuff.  It causes corrosion on metals, deteriorates wood, and is fatal when inhaled. 

Welcome to California's Government by Initiative, where anyone who as an axe to grind and can get a certain number of signatures on a petition (a percentage of the voters in the last general election) can get his proposal on the ballot.  gj

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« Reply #14 on: December 30, 2008, 10:08:09 PM »

Don't forget the big label on the plastic bag that tells you the box wrapping isn't the toy, or part of the toy, and not to put it over your head.
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