At the Border — Dangerous Kids Toys Stopped by Customs

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is quietly stopping the entry of bad toys into the United States. The 2012 statistics are impressive. Two million toys that are considered to be dangerous and to violate the safety rules and regulations in our country, were stopped at the borders and prohibited from getting into the hand of our kids. This is particularly important as the holidays approach and parents are out buying toys they hope and expect will be safe for their children. As California consumer law and child injury lawyers, we applaud these efforts.

The cumulative effect of these border stops amount to a big effort by the border patrol and the CPSC. Estimates are that in the past four years, over eight million units of toys that amount to about 2,400 types of toys have been seized and prohibited from arrival over the borders for failure to comply with our consumer safety standards.

It is still very important that parents pay attention when purchasing toys for age appropriateness. We have previously warned about buying toys and cribs at garage sales or as hand me downs. Sometimes these older toys or cribs have been taken out of store circulation as unsafe, but have remained in the homes of parents. A well-meaning relative might provide a toy to a child that is not safe and has been recalled. This is dangerous and can lead to injury or fatality.

For example, this past year, the “CPSC recalled 38 toys, three of which involved a lead violation.” Although toy recalls have been declining, there are still many every year. In 2011 there were 34. Fatalities related to toys have declined as well. In 2011 there were 13 in total, down from 19 in the previous year. Fatalities can involve choking, asphyxiation and drowning.

Things like balloons can become fatal in the hands of a child. Kids can choke or suffocate on balloons that are deflated or broken. Small toys and their smaller parts are always something to be avoided with little, especially little ones under the age of 3.

Another area of concern are scooters or other riding toys. We have seen kids riding these on neighborhood streets, along with cars. This is unwise. When riding it is important that parents are present and that kids wear helmets. Other products that have shown to be dangerous to kids are magnets. Kids under the age of 14 should not be around high-powered magnets. If there are in proximity to these, an adult should be present.

If your child has been injured by a toy or in a crib, please contact our California child injury law firm for a free consultation about your situation. This evaluation is free of charge and will be with one of our experienced lawyers.