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How Safe Are Your Child’s Toys?

The post-holiday season is spent playing with all the toys and gadgets we get from family and friends, but do you ever sit back and consider the likeliness that the toy your kid is playing with could be dangerous or unsafe? You might be surprised to learn that in 2016, there were an estimated 240,000 toy-related injuries treated in U.S. hospital emergency departments according to a report issued by the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

I would like to think that manufacturers of these toys take the time to create quality products, especially when placing them in the hands of children; however, the laws of supply and demand will undoubtedly result in faster-paced work, less human supervision, and potentially less quality and safety testing. Hazards can include choking, toxic chemicals exceeding those permitted by federal standards, poor or inadequate assembly, or toys that kids ride, such as scooters. Educating yourself on a product’s quality, manufacturer, and consumer history before purchasing or accepting as a gift can prevent an accident that may be life-altering for your child. It’s not always possible or convenient to research every product in your home, and it would be unrealistic to expect you to do so. Here are some quick tips to keep your child safe when playing with a new toy:

  • Pay close attention to the age limit recommendations provided by the manufacturer.
    • For example, a doll or stuffed animal with plastic eyes would be a choking hazard for a child too young to understand they shouldn’t pull them off. It’s only natural for a child to be curious about the way things are assembled, and in the blink of an eye, this hazard can become an irreversible danger.
  • Review the toy’s assembly and parts before handing it over to your child.
    • Carefully examine the toy your child will be playing with to ensure there aren’t any obvious defects. If a part of the toy easily comes off and is small enough to fit into their mouth or nose, you may want to think twice about handing it over. Recalls.gov provides consumers with valuable information about products that have already been reported defective and recalled by the manufacturer.
  • Use safety gear when applicable.
    • That new scooter or skateboard is going to be so much fun for your kid, but not if they suffer a head injury after a big fall. Ensure your child is wearing a helmet or other preventative safety gear before taking off.

Some toy-related injuries are unpreventable, and in these circumstances, it’s your right to seek justice through hiring an attorney to fight on your behalf in the face of large product manufacturers. If the toy had a defect or other issue caused by the manufacturer, you may have a case that could win back your peace of mind. If you or your child has been a victim of harm due to a malfunctioning toy and your current legal representative hasn’t resolved your matter, consider substituting attorneys and get the elite representation you deserve.