With December being National Safe Toys and Gifts Month, we wanted to join in the effort of bringing awareness to safe gift giving. Unfortunately, thousands of children are hurt or even killed each year due to an interaction with an unsafe or developmentally inappropriate toy.
“Parents should go online and look to see what the consumer reports are warning about dangerous toys,” Brad Parker says. “You may not appreciate the danger before someone else points it out.”
In recent years, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has created a toy safety system that requires testing by independent, third-party laboratories. The CPSC enforces stringent lead and phthalates limits for toys and works to stop dangerous toys at the ports and in the marketplace before they ever reach children’s hands. These efforts can bring confidence to parents as they prepare to shop for toys this holiday season, but not all dangerous toys avoid being sold on shelves.
If a child is injured due to a defect in a toy, in some cases the manufacturer can be held liable. “These product liability cases are extremely technical and focus on the special circumstances surrounding each accident,” Brad says.
In many instances, parents fail to purchase the safety equipment required to play with a toy.
“Head injuries are leading causes of death and disability among small children. They should wear helmets any time they are on a bicycle or moving object, and parents should even consider having their kids wear helmets while in their car seats as extra safety precaution,” Brad says. “Lead by example. If kids see parents wearing helmets, they will be more likely to do so as well.”
It’s important to be familiar with a toy before gifting it. Inspect it for sharp edges, ropes, cords or pieces that look like they can be pulled apart. Small children should never be given toys with pieces that can be swallowed or with removable magnets or batteries. Another factor to consider is if the toy is age-appropriate.
Even the best parents with good intentions can make mistakes. Be mindful when doing your Christmas shopping, and if you’ve had a dangerous experience with an unsafe toy, speak up. Other parents, grandparents, babysitters, etc. could benefit from your warning.
At Parker Law Firm, our experienced personal injury lawyers believe people matter. We are committed to our clients, not case numbers, and we believe in the power of the civil justice system. With years spent both representing accident victims and participating in the state legislative process, our founder, Brad Parker, has developed a deep understanding of the law and gained unique experience that helps him get results for his clients.
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