The CPSC knows of 20 toy-related deaths involving children under the age of
15 occurring in 2005. Nine deaths occurred when a child choked on a small ball or other toy parts. It is important when you have children at different age levels to keep small toys, if they must be purchased at all, in an area that is away from the smaller child. Toys with small parts should be left unopened Christmas morning, while it is too busy to keep a good eye on what a small child may pick up.
Last year an estimated 152,400 children under 15 years old were treated for
toy-related injuries in U.S. hospital emergency rooms. The majority of injuries were not the result of recalled or dangerous products. But instead, falls from riding toys made up a large number of the injuries. Young children should only use certain toys and playground equipment when an adult is within arms reach. Just because it is age appropriate doesn’t mean that children can handle the toy on their own.
More magnet injuries have prompted Mattel to recall about 4 and one half million Polly Pocket Magnetic play sets worldwide. Tiny magnets inside the dolls and accessories can fall out. The magnets can be swallowed, or placed the nose or ears. There were three reports of serious injuries to children who swallowed more than one magnet from the Polly Pocket sets. The injured children ranged in age from 2 to 8 years old.
The same hazard was encountered by Magnetics building blocks in the past year, resulting in at least one child death. When more than one magnet is swallowed; the magnets can attract each other and cause intestinal perforation, infection or blockage, which can be fatal. Aspiration to the lungs requires immediate surgery. Also, magnets placed in the nose or ears can cause swelling and be difficult to remove. Serious consideration should be given to the age and maturity of the children in the home before buying toys with magnets.
Other toys that have been recalled from Target this month include:
Truck Carry Case / 087/01/0050 / Lead Paint and Sharp Points
Tiny Playground Set / 086/10/0048 / Lead Paint and Sharp Points
Dream House Play Set / 086/10/0048 / Lead Paint and Sharp Points
Discovery Dinosaur Habitat / 087/01/0011 / Lead Paint
Command Center Action Figure Play Set / 087/01/0034 / Sharp Points
Aircraft Carrier Action Figure Play Set / 087/01/0034 / Sharp Points
Air, Land and Sea Defender Play Set / 087/01/0036 / Lead Paint
Tank Action Figure Play Set / 087/01/0040 / Lead Paint
Helicopter Action Figure Play Set / 087/01/0040 / Lead Paint
Remote Control Trucks / 087/01/0042 / Sharp Points
Play wonder puzzle table/ /choking hazard
The following is a list of Top Holiday Safe Shopping Tips from the CPSC, and they also ask consumers to pay attention to age labels.
Magnets - For children under age six, avoid building sets with small
magnets. If swallowed, serious injuries and/or death can occur.
Small Parts - For children younger than age three, avoid toys with small
parts, which can cause choking.
Ride-on Toys - Riding toys, skateboards and in-line skates go fast and
falls could be deadly. Helmets and safety gear should be sized to fit.
Projectile Toys - Projectile toys such as air rockets, darts and sling
shots are for older children. Improper use of these toys can result in
serious eye injuries.
Chargers and Adapters - Charging batteries should be supervised by
adults. Chargers and adapters can pose thermal burn hazards to children.
Be a label reader. Look for toy labels that give age and safety
recommendations and use that information as a guide.
Select toys to suit the age, abilities, skills and interest level of the
intended child. Look for sturdy construction, such as tightly-secured
eyes, noses and other potential small parts.
For all children under 8, avoid toys that have sharp edges and points.
Once the gifts are open:
Immediately discard plastic wrappings on toys before they become
Keep toys appropriate for older children away from younger siblings or
Pay attention to instructions and warnings on battery chargers. Some
chargers lack any device to prevent overcharging.