OnSafety is the Official Blog Site of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. Here you'll find the latest safety information as well as important messages that will keep you and your family safe. We hope you'll visit often!

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Winter Weather Alert: Generators

Update: Jan. 6, 2014: Winter weather and extreme cold have been crossing the U.S. If you lose power, keep portable generators outside, at least 20 feet away from windows and doors. See below for more safety information. If you use a space heater to stay warm, follow these tips.

First Posted: Dec. 6, 2013

Dangerous ice and snow is sweeping across the plains, south, and heading east.  There are expected to be widespread power outages associated with this large storm.

Are you planning on using a portable gas generator to help you during or after the storm this week?

When dealing with severe winter weather and power outages some people take unnecessary risks. Do not take extra risks with your generator. It can be deadly. (Take a look at this infographic to see just how deadly.) Its invisible odorless CO exhaust can kill you and your family in just minutes.

Be safe. Put your generator:

  • OUTSIDE! Keep it at least 20 feet* away from windows and doors.
  • Do NOT put generators in garages or basements. An open door does NOT provide enough ventilation to save you from deadly carbon monoxide gas.

When you use a generator, be sure to have a working CO alarm in your home. (Note: You should do this anyway.)

Finally, know the initial symptoms of CO poisoning:

  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness.

Get outside into fresh air quickly and call 911 immediately. Know what to do.

* Minimum distance recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Here’s more information on carbon monoxide.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2014/01/winter-weather-alert-generators/

Holiday Toy Safety Q&A

Are you last-minute holiday shopping? If so, take some time to watch CPSC’s first Google+ Hangout.

Our expert engineer, John Massale, explained some toy testing scenarios and talked about toy hazards to look for. Spokeswoman Nikki Fleming, who has nearly two decades of experience talking about toy safety, gave general toy shopping tips and talked about recalls and injuries associated with toys.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2013/12/holiday-toy-safety-qa/

IKEA Reporting Child Death Involving Wall-Mounted Lamp; Recall

Do you have these wall-mounted IKEA children’s lamps in your home?

Recalled Ikea children's lamps

IKEA is recalling these lights and supplying you with free self-adhesive fasteners to attach the lamp’s cord to the wall.

Two children, a 16-month-old and a 15-month-old, got tangled in the lamp’s cord while the children were in their cribs. One child died, the other nearly strangled. In both of these instances, the children pulled the lamp cords into the crib.

Take down these lamps until you get and install the free repair kit from IKEA. Here’s IKEA’s contact information:

  • Toll-free phone: (888) 966-4532 anytime
  • Online at www.ikea-usa.com and click on the Recall link at the top of the page for more information.

This recall is the second in the past month involving cords strangling young children. In November, Angelcare announced a recall to repair movement and sound baby monitors after two deaths.  Keep all cords possible at least 3 feet away from your baby’s crib. Here are more @OnSafety blogs explaining various kid/cord issues.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2013/12/ikea-reporting-child-death-involving-wall-mounted-lamp-recall/

Buying Toys – Safer Toys.

How things have changed when it comes to toy safety.  Back in 2008, 172 toys were recalled — 19 due to lead. In fiscal year 2013, there were 31 toy recalls — none were related to lead.

 

Our new global system to make toys safer means:

  • Toys are now tested by independent, third-party testing laboratories around the world.
  • CPSC and U.S. Customs and Border Patrol are at the ports, stopping toys that violate U.S. standards before they reach children’s hands. This recent video shows an example of a recent toy stoppage.
  • You can shop with confidence. Just remember to use products with care.

 

Here are some things you should know:

  • Five of the 11 toy-related deaths in 2012 occurred when children were riding tricycles.
  • Four of those children were found in pools.
  • Two other children died when they rode scooters into traffic and were unfortunately hit.

Helmets, safety gear and supervision are key for safety when children play on riding toys.

Finally, CPSC continues to be concerned with children’s access to high-powered magnet sets:

 

Here are some additional toy safety tips:

  • Keep deflated and broken balloons away from children.
  • Keep small balls and other toys with small parts away from children under 3.
  • Supervise battery charging. Pay attention to instructions and warnings on these chargers. Some chargers lack a mechanism to prevent overcharging.
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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2013/12/buying-toys-safer-toys/

Baby Movement Monitor Recall: A Cord Issue

Angelcare Movement and Sound Sensor MonitorWe’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Kids and cords are a dangerous mix! No matter the product—baby monitors, window coverings, or baby movement monitors —cords in little hands can end up strangling a child.

We’re reminding you because today CPSC, in cooperation with Angelcare Monitors Inc., is announcing a recall to repair movement and sound baby monitors after two deaths. A cord attaches the baby monitor sensor pad under the crib mattress with the nursery monitor unit. This cord poses a strangulation risk if the child pulls the cord into the crib and the cord becomes wrapped around the child’s neck.

Angelcare is providing cord covers for Angelcare Movement and Sound Monitors with Sensor pads. These cord covers are designed to prevent a child from pulling the cord into the crib. Make sure to contact Angelcare at (855)355-2643 or www.angelcarebaby.com to get a free cord cover.

Angelcare Movement and Sound Baby Monitor with rigid strips repair kit installed

Angelcare Movement and Sound Baby Monitor with rigid strips repair kit installed

As for those traditional baby monitor cords, we continue to recommend that you keep these cords and monitors at least 3 feet away from your baby’s crib. Here’s a video that shows why:

 

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2013/11/baby-movement-monitor-recall-a-cord-issue/