How to Shop Safely and Avoid Hazardous Toys this Holiday Season

If you’re a parent, your biggest concern when buying your child gifts for the holidays may be finding the exact brand and color of the toy they described in their letter to Santa. Plus, you’re probably on the hunt for the best holiday sales. Amidst the holiday cheer, you may not be thinking about the possibility that the toys you are buying for your kids could be dangerous — sadly, many toys available today are toxic and harmful to children.

As consumers, we often trust that the items we purchase are safe. Manufacturers are supposed to test their products, and government regulatory agencies (such as the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission) are supposed to identify safety issues before products reach consumers. We hope care is taken to protect us from hazards — especially when an item is for kids — but negligence causes many people to be injured by dangerous and defective products every year.

Shop from Verified Sellers

Although it’s nice to save money, going for cheaper options can be dangerous. While shopping online, you should use your best judgment when dealing with new businesses. If a toy is shipping from a company you’re not familiar with, avoiding it altogether may be a good call.

Purchasing toys from individual sellers can also be dangerous. When an item is recalled, it’s taken from store shelves but may still be for sale on platforms such as Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace. The Fisher-Price Rock ’n Play Sleeper, a product that has been linked to the deaths of several infants, is still being sold on these platforms, says Consumer Reports. When individual sellers and their customers are both unaware of the dangers of a product, the results can be catastrophic.

Unfortunately, dangerous toys aren’t only sold by individuals or companies that look sketchy. Major retailers have been identified in cases of hazardous children’s items. For example, Amazon has recently been in the news for the sale of dangerous toys on their website. Many of these toys are sold by third parties which use Amazon as a retail platform, but this story is a reminder not to trust a toy just because it is associated with a name you recognize.

Check Recall Reports

If there is a specific item you are planning on purchasing, you should do your research before buying. A quick internet search should let you know if a toy has been labeled as dangerous, is the subject of any lawsuits, or has been recalled. Reading the news or checking regulatory agency websites can help you uncover information about the toys you plan on buying this year.

Monitor Use

After you buy a toy, it is important to remain vigilant and monitor your child’s use. Watch out for small pieces they can choke on, and don’t allow small children to chew on toys with metal pieces.

The McHargue & Jones, LLC legal team represents people who have been harmed by the use of dangerous and defective products. We aim to hold negligent corporations accountable and recover just compensation for their victims. If you or a loved one were harmed by a hazardous toy or another item, contact us today.

To schedule a free consultation with our team of lawyers, send us your contact information or call (312) 739-0000 to get in touch.