As shoppers head out in droves this holiday season, many of the gifts they’ll bring home will be, of course, toys. As CNBCreports, there are toys out there that can cause injuries, and avoiding them may mean avoiding a trip to the emergency room.
The number of toy-related injuries fluctuates, but is still typically in the hundreds of thousands. In 1997, there were 141,300 toy-related injuries; in 2001, there were about 255,100; and in 2006, there were about 220,500. CNBC reports that according Consumer Product Safety Commission, there were 265,000 toy-related injuries in 2012.
World Against Toys Causing Harm (WATCH) has compiled a list of the top 10 worst toys for 2014, which are “designed and marketed for sales over safety.” Here is the list:
- Zing: Air Storm Firetek Bow
- Radio Flyer: Radio Flyer Ziggle
- Toysmith: Catapencil
- Skip Hop: Alphabet Zoo Rock and Stack Pull Toy
- Junxing: SWAT Electric Machine Gun
- Wal-Mart: Wooden Instruments
- Norman and Globus: Bottle Rocket Party
- JC Toys: Lil’ Cutesies – Best Friends
- Toys R US: True Legends Orcs Battle Hammer
- Toys R US: Colored Hedgehog
The good news is that there are ways for parents and relatives of children to recognize what could be a potentially dangerous toy, and avoid buying it. According to the Easton Courier, the Connecticut Better Business Bureau has offered a few tips for shoppers that will help increase safe toy purchases this holiday season.
One of the easiest ways to identify a dangerous toy is to check for a recall on it, which can be done on the Consumer Product Safety Commission website. The only caveat with doing that, however, is that many toys are on the market for months before getting recognized as dangerous. Shoppers should also keep in mind that recalled products might be sold secondhand or online through auctioning sites. Additionally, shoppers should always keep the age of the child in mind and adhere to the age recommendations on the packaging.