In one of my favorite Holiday movies, “A Christmas Story” the main character Ralphie is a young boy who has his heart set on a “Red Ryder carbine-action two-hundred shot range model air rifle.” But, whenever he brings it up he is told “You’ll shoot your eye out!” Unfortunately in many cases, the dangers presented by toys are not so obvious as Ralphie’s BB gun.
The World Against Toys Causing Harm, Inc. (W.A.T.C.H.) has published its “Worst Toy” List for 2016, and some of the items are surprising.
Toy #1 is “Peppa Pig’s Muddy Puddles Family”.
Although some packages contain choking hazard warnings and “age 3+” recommendations, other packages are sold for children as young as two and up with no warnings about toy-related hazards.
Toy #2 is “Kids Time Baby Children’s Elephant Pillow”.
Despite the known hazards associated with infant pillows, this item is marketed to parents of infants with very little warning. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has warned that a pillow can block a baby’s mouth and can cause a baby to suffocate. Additionally, infant pillows that are intended or promoted for use by children under one year of age have been banned by the Federal Hazardous Substances Act (16 CFR 1500.18).
Toy #3 is “Slimeball Slinger”.
Although the toy does carry a warning, the “slinger” is similar to a slingshot and has the potential to cause serious eye injuries.
Toy #4 is “Banai Bump N’Bounce Body Bumpers”.
Although the warning label indicates impact hazards and the need for protective gear, the children pictured on the box are not wearing any protective gear and none is included. This product encourages kids as young as four to run and bump into each other, which all but guarantees some type of impact injury.
Toy #5 is “Nerf Rival Apollo XV-700 Blaster”.
This product does have an age recommendation of “14+” but carries no warnings whatsoever. If you are like me, you assume “Nerf” guns to be relatively safe, however, according to WATCH, the ammunition provided with this gun can shoot with enough force to potentially cause eye injuries.