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Toy safety group cautions against trending toy hazards – Boston University News Service – Boston, Massachusetts

Boston, Massachusetts 2021-11-30 18:26:07 –

Sarah Reed Dean
Boston University News Service

What do Tummy Time Prop & Play, My Lil’Baby Feed & Go Set, and Light-Up Heel Skates all have in common?

By name, it’s like a fun toy to entertain and help kids grow. In fact, each of these toys, along with the other seven toys, is considered by the Massachusetts-based organization World Against Toys Causing Harm, Inc to be the “10 Worst Toys” of 2021.

“When I was a kid, when people gave me and my brothers gifts, everyone was afraid to give us toys, so we always got a sweater,” WATCH said. Joan Schiff, daughter of the president and founder Edward Swarts, said.

WATCH is an annual release 10 Worst toy list On November 17, he warned his parents, “Beware of the dangers of buying potentially harmful toys.” This list highlights the dangers posed by each toy, shows the warnings provided by the manufacturer, and provides “WATCH OUT!”. A message of caution.

According to Schiff, families of injured children tell her that their lives would look different if they knew about a particular danger.

“They don’t want other families to experience what they’ve experienced,” Schiff said. “Really, sharing information and awareness can save lives.”

This list isn’t all of the dangers children’s toys can pose, but it’s a “practical guide,” Schiff said, adding that many are hidden dangers. Among her concerns are head, face and other impact injuries. Choking, ingestion and choking.

Children under the age of 12 were treated for an estimated 144,700 toy-related injuries in 2020. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.. Between 2018 and 2020, 51 children were reported dead in toy-related incidents.

“There’s definitely an improvement,” Siff said, even before government regulations and toy safety conversations became commonplace. “But similar dangers are recurring year after year.”

“Similar danger [as] The toys on the list 10 or 20 years ago are really annoying because they talk about child safety, “Shiff said. “Why are they still on the shelves?”

WATCH highlighted recent increases in battery intake and wheel-related injuries. Siff attributed this trend to the COVID-19 pandemic as children spend more time at home and do outdoor activities.

Outdoor and sports toys are the largest category of toy spending, with 2021 sales of $ 2.9 billion as of August. report According to the market research company NPD Group.

The product label of “My First Hoverboard,” a toy with wheels on the WATCH list, warns that “you may die or be seriously injured” if you do not follow the instructions.

“Warnings and instructions are necessary and important, but this does not mean that the manufacturer can be exempt from liability simply by adding a label to the toy,” WATCH said. Press release Status.

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, battery-related injuries in children under the age of 15 increased by 93% from an estimated 858 injuries in 2019 to an estimated 1,654 injuries in 2020. report.. Schiff reiterated that this is likely due to children spending more time in homes where toys and other devices contain batteries.

The list includes “Squeakee Minis Poppy the Bunny”, which contains three coin cell batteries. The toy’s warning states, “In just two hours, it can cause internal chemical burns and even death.”

American Academy of Pediatrics “Tips for buying toys for babies and toddlers” It also encourages consumers to “avoid coin cell batteries and toys with strong magnets.”

“When determining the safety of a toy, we need to consider the characteristics of the toy, how it is used and abused, and the amount of supervision and support needed for safe play,” said the AAP website. increase.

Schiff said parents should be vigilant when choosing toys, regardless of brand names or possible assumptions based on retailers.

“Of course, toy shoppers have the false sense of security that if they find a toy on a store shelf or online, it’s safe. Toys are made for fun, so toys Is made for kids, “says Siff.

The organization also warns about the disadvantages of buying toys online. Consumers cannot inspect toys and their packaging to recognize potential dangers to avoid.

Last year, the CPSC recalled 14 toys (more than 10 million units) that could cause injury or death, according to a press release.

Siff added that recalls may remain in homes, schools, and second-hand stores, as they may not reach everyone who owns the recalled toys.

“One injury per child is too much, especially if the injury can be prevented,” says WATCH. “Toys are a decoration of life, not a necessity. There is no excuse to manufacture, import or distribute toys that can kill children.”

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