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.
This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2013/12/holiday-toy-safety-qa/
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.
This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2013/12/buying-toys-safer-toys/
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Jump, bounce, squeal. These are the happy sounds of a child playing on a trampoline in the backyard.
In between bounces a young child calls out to his friend, “Join me.”
The friend races out to the backyard and bounds onto the trampoline.
The sound of an “uh-oh” about to happen.
Only one person should be on a trampoline at a time.
The noise you don’t want to hear, typically followed by a child crying.
While just playing in and around the house, children often stub their fingers, bonk their heads, and fall down—all minor injuries.
Getting hurt on a trampoline can be much worse.
Last year, about 95,000 people suffered injuries of such a serious nature that there were taken to an emergency room for treatment. Between 2000 and 2009, 22 families lost a loved one from a trampoline mishap.
Installing and maintaining the enclosure around the trampolines and being aware that children younger than 5 are at the greatest risk of injury can make for a safer experience in the back yard.
Zip, cover, scoot. These are the sounds of you making the trampoline a safer place to play.
- Zip up the surrounding enclosure.
- Cover the springs, hooks and frame in shock-absorbing pads.
- Scoot the trampoline away from structures and trees.
Help minimize the risks of trampoline play. Learn more on our Trampoline Safety Alert page.
This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2013/07/the-sounds-of-trampoline-safety/
Calling all moms, dads and kids of all ages in the Washington, D.C., region. Join us at our ScienSafety! booth at this year’s USA Science and Engineering Festival.
The free festival is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, April 28, and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, April 29, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, 801 Mount Vernon Place, NW, Washington, D.C.
At our booth (booth #727!), kids will work with CPSC engineers on a hands-on demonstration on toy testing. They’ll learn first-hand how our scientists and engineers determine which ages a toy is appropriate for.
So, bring your kids to meet and play with us. They, and you, will learn how to play it safe.
This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2012/04/live-hands-on-event-product-safety-is-no-accident/
You might know them best from your smart phone or the panel on a new kitchen appliance. They’re on many consumer products with “scratchable” surfaces these days, including on children’s toys and mirrors. Plastic film coverings are intended as packaging. Remove them before you give a toy to a child.
If you don’t remove that film, or don’t even realize it’s on a toy, your child could find it before you do. They could mouth it and gag, or even choke on it.
That’s what reportedly happened to two young children playing in their Fisher-Price Luv U Zoo Jumperoo bouncy seats. The mirror on the toy comes with a plastic film cover on it. A Washington state family told a Seattle TV station that they didn’t realize the plastic was on the toy until their son gagged, couldn’t breathe and eventually coughed it up.
In the middle of the plastic film that arrived on this type of toy examined at CPSC was a separate clear sticker with a big red X. The X sticker can pull off without grabbing the plastic film on the toy mirror. On one side of the plastic film is an arrow that points at the X. Again, a parent can pull the arrow off without pulling off the plastic film.
If you see the film on a mirror or other product without an arrow or “X” to guide you to remove it, you might not even realize that the plastic cover is there. So, take an extra look at your children’s toys. Are there mirrors or scratchable surfaces that seem like they should be shiny but aren’t? If so, look for a thin piece of plastic, remove it and throw it away.
This piece of plastic on a child's toy is thin and difficult to notice if you've removed the arrow. Remove plastic like this from all items that you give to your young child.
Other “grown-up toys” like cellphones, video monitors and even stainless steel appliances, have similar plastic film coverings. In all cases, don’t let the “new toy” distract you from carefully removing and discarding the film if you have a small child in your home.
This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2012/04/plastic-film-covers/