When the Super Soaker was first released back in 1990, it sparked a huge controversy when miscreants reportedly started filling the large tanks with chemical irritants and shooting unsuspecting victims. Thirty years later, the Super Soaker is back in the news again for being dangerous, but this time it’s a result of decorative labels featuring dangerous levels of lead in the ink they’re printed with.
Shortly after Larami Toys introduced the Super Soaker there were isolated reports of the toy being misused to shoot bleach instead of water, leading to a call for the squirt gun to be banned, despite water guns having existed for decades prior. Nothing ever came of it, and eventually, Larami Toys was acquired by Hasbro in 1995, who is behind the current recall for the latest versions of the water blaster.
According to a listing on the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission website, Hasbro is recalling the Super Soaker XP20 (featuring a green and orange design) as well as the Super Soaker XP30 (featuring an orange and blue design) which were both exclusively sold at Target from March 2020 to July 2020. The toys themselves work fine and pose no safety risk, but the labels on the tanks featuring the product name and Super Soaker branding “contain levels of lead in the ink that exceed the federal lead content ban.” No specific injuries have been reported to date, but if consumed the lead can be toxic and “can cause adverse health effects” in children.
Hasbro has officially recalled the two Super Soakers and is asking parents to immediately take the toys away from kids and return the tanks to the company for a full refund. To request a postage pre-paid shipping label, consumers can contact Hasbro at 1-888-664-3323, through email at SuperSoakerRecall@Hasbro.com, or through the company’s website.