Common Law - The FindLaw Consumer Protection Law Blog

Top 3 Holiday Toy Shopping Tips

The holidays are not the most wonderful time of the year when it comes to toys and kid injuries.

The same toys that are pleaded for on Christmas lists may not be the safest. Recent data by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission shows that although toy recalls have dropped of late, the number has been made up by an increase in toy injuries. There were only three toy recalls in 2010, but there were an estimated 186,000 toy-related emergency room trips during 2009.

In order to help get that number down and keep toy related injuries to a minimum, CPSC has released the top three tips for toy safety during the holidays and beyond:

  1. Choose age appropriate toys. Toys that are appropriate for one age group may be entirely inappropriate for another. Also keep in mind that size matters when it comes to young children.
  2. Include safety gear whenever shopping for sports-related items and any other ride-on toys
  3. Be aware of your child's surroundings when playing on the toys. There are both indoor and outdoor hazards that children should keep away from, including: streets where cars drive by, bathrooms with dangerous materials and corded window blinds, and any bodies of water.

"Although toys can bring a lot of happiness, they can also be a source of serious outcomes like injuries or even death. Always examine toys carefully to make sure there are no dangers before making the purchase," Jeff Griffin, program associate for Ohio Public Research Group, told The Columbus Dispatch.

While there are important customer protections in place that hopefully help warn of dangers, the ultimate safety guard rests on the parents and caregivers watching the children enjoy their new toys.

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