Toy Safety Tips and 2012 Injury Prevention Efforts Detailed by CPSC

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The year is almost at a close and thus the Consumer Product Safety Commission is touting some of their results from the previous fiscal year.  In addition to just revealing their recent track record, though, the agency is providing some valuable safety tips to consumer just in time for the holidays.  We’d like to relate those tips, as well as information regarding what the CPSC did in the past year to protect children from potentially dangerous toys.

One thing the agency is particularly concerned about is preventing a potential tragedy on Christmas or in the days to follow.  Their safety tips are geared toward protecting families on what should be a happy day.

Any parent has probably been through this scenario or known someone who has:  you wait in line for hours to get the hot new toy of the season, and when the child opens it, he or she is more enthused by the box it comes in.  Although somewhat adorable, this could actually pose a hazard.  Parents are instructed to get rid of any toy packaging or plastic wrapping before the child can hurt themselves with it.

If you have older kids as well as younger ones, make sure that there’s a distinct separation of the toys that belong to each.  Toys appropriate for an older child could pose a choking hazard or similar risk to a smaller kid, so make sure to keep an eye on the proceedings to verify that each toy is used by the appropriately aged child.  Also understand the dangers that can present while charging a battery.  You should supervise this activity at all times so as to prevent overcharging and an ensuing thermal burn that could cause an injury to a child.  Heed the instructions of all chargers and respect any warnings offered.

These are those hazards that can be kept at bay by following the necessary safety precautions, but what about those hazards that present throughout the previous year?  Thankfully, the CPSC helped to cut down on the risk of injury through their efforts and those of Customs and Border Protection.  An estimated two million or more toys were prevented from entering the country by the agencies.  This move was made in order to keep potentially dangerous items away from children.  And for the past four years, a whopping 8.5 million individual toys have been heeded off at the ports before they could arrive on shelves.

But work remains to be done.  Toy recalls, 38 of which were issued in the past year, are always going to pop up every once in awhile, whether due to a choking risk, a lead contamination, or some other hazard.  Always do what’s necessary to ensure safety and keep yourself informed about CPSC recall announcements.