The metal is known to cause cancer, kidney damage, and reproductive problems.
A new study from the Center for Environment Health (CEH) has revealed something scary: a toxic metal has been found in jewelry sold in national retail stores such as Ross, Nordstrom Rack and Papaya. The metal, cadmium, has been linked to cancer, kidney damage and reproductive problems after prolonged exposure.
According to the CEH study, 31 pieces of adult jewelry contained at least 40 percent cadmium. Most of the jewelry tested had more than 90% cadmium. All samples tested were purchased in the San Francisco Bay area in 2017 and 2018. Most of the problematic samples were purchased at Ross, which has 1,400 stores in 38 states.
California passed a law in 2010 that prohibited the sale of children’s jewelry with more than .03% cadmium. For anyone, the risk of exposure to cadmium is high, because it can accumulate in our systems. Human bodies get rid of cadmium slowly, which can cause problems over time. Cadmium can remain in the human body for as long as 30 years, and is more easily absorbed by children than by adults.
Anyone harmed by a product such as jewelry containing cadmium may have the basis for a products liability lawsuit. According to an experienced personal injury attorney, a products liability claim is based on an allegation that there is something wrong with a product that caused an injury or illness. This is based on one of three theories: (1) that the product had a manufacturing defect; (2) that the product was defectively designed; (3) or that the product did not have proper instructions or failed to warn consumers about its dangers. In this case, the likely theory is that the product was defectively designed, using dangerous products, and there is no way for consumers to use it safely.
Products liability lawsuits can be maintained against manufacturers, distributors and retailers of dangerous or defective items. In the case of the jewelry, these retailers may be found liable because — according to CEH — most major retailers have a system to test and analyze jewelry to ensure that it does not contain cadmium. However, it appears that at least some retailers, including the 3 mentioned above, did not have such safeguards in place. CEH has offered to test jewelry for consumers if they are concerned about it.
Although cadmium is considered toxic, there is no federal standard for the concentration of cadmium that can be in jewelry in the United States. Similarly, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission does not set any limits on cadmium. This may mean that it is up to consumers — through products liability lawsuits and other means — to push for change.
If you have been injured or developed an illness from a dangerous or defective product, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. A personal injury attorney can help. At PLBSH, we have more than 40 years of experience working with clients to seek justice for their injuries. Contact us today at (800) 435-7542 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more or to schedule an initial consultation today.