Governor bans 'yo-yo waterballs'

Thursday, June 9, 2005

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Sales of a stretchy toy called the "yo-yo waterball" will soon end in Illinois after Gov. Rod Blagojevich signed a bill Wednesday banning sales of the popular drugstore item.

The toy is a liquid-filled rubber ball attached to a rubbery, sticky cord. Some consumer safety groups and parents say the cord is a suffocation hazard for children. The ban will go into effect Jan. 1, 2006.

The federal commission issued a warning in September saying there is "a low but potential risk" to children who play with the toy, but it didn't ban sales, estimated to be 11 million to 15 million yo-yo waterballs nationwide. The product is banned in the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada.

Under the law, a person who sells the toy in Illinois could face a fine of $1,001 for each violation.

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