Mattel settles with Ala., 38 states over tainted toys

UNDATED (AP) - Alabama is among 39 states participating in a $12 million settlement with Mattel over Chinese-made lead-tainted toys shipped to the U.S. in 2007.

The toy maker and its Fisher Price unit recalled more than 21 million Chinese-made toys last year, fearing the items were tainted with lead paint and had tiny magnets that children could accidentally swallow.

As part of the agreement, Mattel also agreed to lower the acceptable level of lead in toys shipped to the states to 90 parts per million.

That would be down from 600 parts per million, which is currently the federal standard.

When new regulations go into place next year, however, the federal standard will also fall to 90 parts per million.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.) AP-NY-12-16-08 0833EST