Warning: Holiday Lights Causes ‘Serious Health Problems’ In New York
A recent law aims to protect New Yorkers from "serious health" issues caused by holiday decorations.
Governor Kathy Hochul recently signed a bill into law that aims to protect New Yorkers during the holiday season.
Governor Hochul Signs Legislation Protecting New Yorkers from Lead Exposure in Christmas and Holiday Decorations
The bill hopes to protect Empire State residents from lead exposure that could come from Christmas lights and other holiday decorations.
"As we decorate our homes for the holidays, New Yorkers shouldn't have to worry about accidentally exposing children and loved ones to lead poisoning," Hochul said. "This legislation is a simple, common-sense way to keep New Yorkers safe as we participate in beloved holiday traditions. Let's have a safe, healthy and happy holiday season."
The new law requires warning labels be placed on seasonal and decorative lighting products that use lead-based electrical cord casings.
All seasonal and decorative lighting products with an electrical cord casing that has lead over 100 parts per million must have a warning label, officials say.
The warning label must read:
Warning: handling the coated electrical wire of this product may expose you to lead. Wash hands thoroughly after use.
Violators will be subject to a $500 fine.
Dangers Of Lead Exposure
"Exposure to lead has been repeatedly proven to be attributed to serious health problems including attacks on the brain and central nervous system, heart and kidney disease, reduced fertility and depression, and severe consequences for children," Hochul's Office stated in a press release.
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Holiday Lights May Contain Unsafe Lead Levels
Holiday lights contain potentially unsafe levels of lead, according to several studies.
A recent study by the Consumer Product Safety Commission found that some popular brands over 30 times the levels regulators permit in children's products.
Another study, published in the Journal of Environmental Health, found that nearly all the holiday lights tested had levels that surpassed the EPA's limit.
Important Holiday Shipping Dates for New York in 2023
Gallery Credit: Dave Wheeler