Black Friday: Beware of the worst toys of 2012

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November 21, 2012, 7:54 am
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(NECN) - The lists are out for the hottest toys of the holiday season - but what about the worst?

Joan Siff is the president of WATCH (World Against Toys Causing Harm).

She stopped by "The Morning Show" to share a list of the top 10 worst toys for children:

1. Magnetic Fishing Game (Manufacturer: Kole Imports)
2. Bongo Ball (Manufacturer: Toys R Us, Inc.)
3. Dart Zone Quick Fire 12-Dart Gun (Prime Time Toys Ltd.)
4. Spinner Shark 4-Wheel Kneeboard (FuzionNextsport)
5. Explore & Learn Helicopter (V Tech)
6. N-Force Vendetta Double Sword (Hasbro)
7. Water Balloon Launcher (Water Sports, LLC)
8. Power Ranger Super Samurai Shogun Helmet (Bandai)
9. Playful Xylophone (P'Kolino)
10. The Avengers Gamma Green Smash Fists (hasbro)

So what makes these "10 Worst Toys" so dangerous?

According to WATCH, "Small parts, strings, projectiles, rigid materials and other defects, that lead to choking, impact injuries, strangulation, burns, impalement, lacerations, and puncture injuries. Small parts on toys have been a perpetual, often deadly, and shockingly overlooked hazard.

"There remain an alarming number of toys on toy store shelves with easily detachable small parts or affixed small parts that can be aspirated, ingested, or occlude a child's airway. Young oral-age children are at risk when they are able to break off pieces of shoddily made or inadequately designed toys."

WATCH says that small parts, detachable small parts, strings, projectiles, rigid materials are just some of the hazardous "red flags" that consumers should look for when shopping for toys.

For online shopping, WATCH wants consumers to be equipped with the following information:

"In 2012, nearly half of consumers plan to look for holiday gifts on-line. While such purchase methods make toy shopping convenient and more efficient, Internet toy shoppers are often provided with less product information prior to purchase.

"Many of the toys displayed and available for purchase on-line, for example, have retailer warnings and age recommendations that are inconsistent with those supplied by manufacturers.

"In some cases, the warnings may be omitted from the Internet description completely. Such omissions and inconsistencies regarding important safety information can lead to misinformed, and potentially dangerous, consumer purchases.  

"Consumers buying toys on the Internet are already at a disadvantage not being able to touch and physically inspect a toy and its packaging for more obvious hazards. Without important safety information, an on-line toy shopper may not know hazards of a purchase at the time of sale."

So how can consumers shop for safe toys?

According to WATCH, "The best weapon in the fight to prevent injuries to children continues to be safely designed and manufactured products. The burden must be on manufacturers and retailers, not consumers, to identify the known hazards before their products enter the channels of commerce.

However, consumers need to be smart and vigilant when shopping for toys. Do not assume that all toys purchased from big-name manufacturers and retailers, such as Hasbro and Toys R Us, are not dangerous. In fact, seeing a familiar name on a package can lead to a false sense of security that the toy enclosed is safe."

Tags: Parenting, children, kids , shopping, toys, holiday shopping, Black Friday, WATCH, the morning show, World Against Toys Causing Harm, Joan Siff, dangerous toys, harmful toys
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