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Parents Beware: There’s a Hidden Danger in Christmas Lights

Released: 12/5/2013 2:00 PM EST
Source Newsroom: Cornell University
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Joseph Laquatra, Cornell University professor of design and environmental analysis warns parents of a hidden danger in many Christmas lights, lead.

Laquatra says:

“Lead is in the PVC jacketing that connects Christmas lights to each other, because of this, strings of Christmas lights should be handled carefully. As very small amounts on lead can cause serious health problems, especially in children, it is important that children not handle them. And anyone who does should wash hands thoroughly.

“An additional concern is degradation of Christmas light strings that are installed outdoors. Exposure to sunlight can result in lead being released from the strings and then contaminating soil.

“Lead enters the human body through skin contact, ingestion and inhalation. Very small amounts of lead can cause serious health problems, especially in children. There is no known safe exposure level to lead.”

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