Holiday Toy Safety Tips

Toy safety at focus of new list, CalPIRG warning

By Bob Hansen and Eric S. Page
|  Tuesday, Nov 24, 2009  |  Updated 11:13 PM PDT
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Sealy warned parents about the lead content in this cloth book.

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Holiday Toy Safety Tips

A new list is out, warning of dangerous toys.
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A new list is out, warning of dangerous toys.
   
For 24 years, the annual Toy Safety Survey put out by the national PIRG organization has warned parents about playthings. Sometimes they make the list because a child could could choke on small parts, sometimes the toys or made out of lead or make loud noises -- every time, though, it's about safety.

Students at Integral Elementary School in La Jolla sang their Thanksgiving Day song a few minutes before the public interest group CalPIRG used the school grounds to announce that they were putting out a warning on unsafe toys.

"In the past two years, at least 13 children have choked to death on balloons, balls, toys or parts of toys," said CalPIRG spokesman William Sealy.

Often it's not the toy itself as much as the age of the child that plays the bigger role in the incident. Many toys that are fine for older children could be dangerous in the hands of an infant.


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Consumers shopping for children should watch out for choking and toxic hazards.

"After we noted the CPSC of this product here, Toys R Us has marked it as a stop sale in their system and is no longer selling this product," Sealy said, referring to a cloth book that CalPIRG said has a high degree of lead.

CalPIRG also warned parents about loud toys and choking hazards.

"If the toy fits within the toilet paper roll, then you should not have your child under three playing with that toy," Sealy said.

The study focuses on new toys, but parents should also be concerned about toys purchased at thrift stores, garage sales or that are passed along by friends and family.
 

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