Before purchasing toys for children or a holiday gift drive, it is important to make sure that you are choosing ones that are safe and age appropriate to avoid some of the hazards that may accompany these gifts. To ensure that this holiday season is a happy and safe one, consider the following tips when purchasing toys for young children:
- Choking hazards: Safe Kids Worldwide, a nonprofit devoted to child protection, states that age is one of the most important factors when purchasing a toy for a child. Choking hazards are among the most common in toys, so do not purchase products that have a lot of small parts for a child under the age of 10.
- Hazardous chemicals: Fisher-Price, one of the biggest manufacturers of toys and games in the world, suggests looking into the materials that are contained within the toys before making the purchase. Hazardous chemicals, such as mercury, arsenic and formaldehyde, can be present, and should be avoided no matter the age of the child.
- Plastic wrapping: Fisher-Price also urges adults to get rid of any and all plastic wrapping as soon as the toy is out of the box, as these materials can be especially hazardous. Keep a garbage bag handy to dispose of all wrapping paper, plastic containers and other materials immediately after the gifts are unwrapped.
- Electronic toys: The Consumer Product Safety Commission argues that electronic toys should only be played with when an adult is present. This is especially important if the toy needs to be plugged into an outlet, but also notable for battery-powered items. If the child is 10 or under, monitor them when they play with electronic toys.
- Toy recalls: Sometimes, the toy you purchase will seem fine when you’re at the store, but then the company issues a recall. For this reason, Selective has put together a Safety Toolbox for you to remain up to date on any recall.
Follow these tips to ensure every gift you give is a safe one. Happy shopping!
Printed with permission, Selective Insurance Company