December is National Toy Safety Month

November 30, 2015

Posted by Lisa Lomasney

December is National Toy Safety Month

With the holiday shopping season approaching, your thoughts may be turning to shopping for toys and gifts for special boys and girls in your life.  There are thousands of toys to choose from in stores and online and children have been seeing items in stores and on TV commercials.  Before you make purchases, remember to consider the safety and recommended age-range of the toys.

To prevent injuries, choose toys that are safe and approved for the age of the child.  Look for labels to help you judge which toys might not be safe, especially for infants and children under age three.  For children of all ages, consider if the toys are suited to their skills and abilities.

Along with knowing what kinds of toys to choose, it's important to know what kinds of toys to avoid in order to prevent possible injuries.  For example, do not choose:

  • Toys with small parts and sharp edges and points
  • Guns and other toys that shoot flying objects and make loud noises
  • Crayons and markers that are not labeled non-toxic
  • Toys that could shatter into fragments if broken
  • Toys with ropes or cords
  • Electric toys with heating elements

Even within the child's age range, toys suitable for one child might not be suitable for another child and the gift giver should consider the child's abilities and development.  Keep in mind that younger children, if they're not being watched closely, may play with toys with small parts purchased for older children.  Remember, toys with small parts should be kept away from children under three years of age.

Everyone should be aware of what they can do to make sure the gifts they give children this year will not lead to any injuries or require a trip to the emergency room. 

For toy hazard recalls, visit the Consumer Product Safety Commission's (CPSC) website.

For more information in regards to required toy safety testing and ASTM standards, visit the CPSC's page on Toy Safety.


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