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In a 1963 tie-in with the Walt Disney movie Son of Flubber, Hasbro developed a product called Flubber, a substance made of rubber and mineral oil that could bounce like a ball and take imprints (similar to Silly Putty). After it had been on the market for several months, the company began receiving reports that Flubber was causing a rash. The Flubber formula had passed all the regular tests, but the company began testing again, this time on volunteer prisoners. One prisoner developed a rash on his head, and the company learned that the product irritated hair follicles of a small percentage of the population.

Hasbro recalled Flubber--thousands and thousands of balls--and consigned it to the city dump. The next day Hasbro execs received a call from the mayor of Providence, who informed them that a black cloud hovered over the dump; the rubber would not burn properly. Merrill Hassenfeld of Hasbro called the Coast Guard for permission to weight the Flubber and dump it at sea. Permission was granted. However, the next day the Coast Guard called to complain that Flubber was floating all over Narrangansett Bay. After paying the Coast Guard to sweep the ocean, Hassenfeld took the mess and buried it in his backyard. (adapted from Toyland)

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