In recent years, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has created a robust toy safety system, by requiring testing by independent, third party testing laboratories around the world; enforcing stringent lead and phthalates limits for toys; imposing some of the most stringent toy standards in the world; and stopping violative and dangerous toys at the ports and in the marketplace before they reach children’s hands. These combined efforts continue to foster the confidence of American families as they prepare to shop for toys this holiday season.
Safety tips to keep in mind this holiday season:
Children can choke or suffocate on deflated or broken balloons. Keep deflated balloons away from children younger than eight years old. Discard broken balloons immediately.
Small balls and other toys with small parts
For children younger than age three, avoid toys with small parts, which can cause choking.
Scooters and other riding toys
Riding toys, skateboards and in-line skates go fast, and falls could be deadly. Helmets and safety gear should be worn properly at all times and they should be sized to fit.
High-powered magnet sets are dangerous and should be kept away from children. Whether marketed for children or adults, building and play sets with small magnets should also be kept away from small children.
Once gifts are open:
- Immediately discard plastic wrapping or other toy packaging before the wrapping and packaging become dangerous play things.
- Keep toys appropriate for older children away from younger siblings.
- Battery charging should be supervised by adults. Chargers and adapters can pose thermal burn hazards to young children. Pay attention to instructions and warnings on battery chargers. Some chargers lack any mechanism to prevent overcharging.
Toy Safety Guides
The CPSC provides free safety alerts, guides, posters, brochures, handbooks and other materials which you can use to help spread consumer product safety information in your community.
- Choking Hazard: Plastic Film on Toys and Other Children’s Products »
- Strings and Straps on Toys Can Strangle Young Children »
- Ingested Magnets Can Cause Serious Intestinal Injuries »
- Balloons Can be Suffocation Danger to Kids »
- Caps for Toy Guns »
- Electric Toy Safety »
- Child Safety Protection Act Fact Sheet »
- CPSC Warns Consumers of Dangers with Toy Chest Lids »
- Button Battery Safety Quiz »