Feds act to stop sale of magnetic Buckyballs

    The government is taking legal steps to stop the sale of some high-powered desktop toys for adults because children are getting hurt.

    The Consumer Product Safety Commission has filed an administrative complaint against New York-based Maxfield & Oberton, the manufacturer of Buckyballs — those small but very powerful magnets that are strong enough to mold and shape into different forms and structures on your desk.

    CPSC says the company refused to recall the product. In another front against the company, the agency said it was able to convince about 10 retailers, including Amazon.com and Brookstone, to stop selling Buckyballs.


    • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor

    Since 2009, CPSC says at least a dozen children, from toddlers to teens, have swallowed the magnets. Some required surgery.

    A call to Maxfield & Oberton was not immediately returned.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal