McDonald's is encouraging patrons to return a new, free product that was accompanying Happy Meals after reports of the fitness-centric accessory causing skin irritation and burns to people wearing them. The fast food giant had included the STEP-iT activity wristband with the food marketed to children for just days before the company pulled it from restaurants.
The U.S. Consumer Protection Safety Commission (CPSC) on Tuesday officially issued a recall for the plastic products that include the STEP-iT "Activity Counter" and its motion-activated "Light-up Band" after it said McDonald's had gotten "more than 70 reports of incidents, including seven reports of blisters."
Those who purchased a Happy Meal between Aug. 9 and Aug. 17 can return the STEP-iT wristbands to the location from which they were bought in exchange for a replacement toy and either yogurt or sliced apples. About 29 million wristbands were sent to U.S. restaurants and more than 3.5 million in Canada.
The wristband "is in line with McDonald’s general philosophy for Happy Meal toys, which is to make toys that encourage either physical or imagination-based play," the company announced last week.
According to the Consumerist, an internal McDonald's memo has instructed its employees handling the wristbands to mark all opened and unopened packages of wristbands with a "Hold/Do not use" note and immediately remove them from stores and arrange for deliveries of the replacement toys.
CPSC's full recall description follows below:
This recall involves "Step-iT" activity wristbands, which come in two styles—"Activity Counter" and a motion-activated "Light-up Band." The Activity Counter comes in translucent plastic orange, blue or green and features a digital screen that tracks a child’s steps or other movement. The Light-up Band comes in translucent plastic red, purple, or orange and blinks light with the child’s movement. Both styles of activity wristbands have a square face with the words "STEP-iT" printed on them and a button to depress and activate the wristband. The back of the square face contains the etched words "Made for McDonald’s."