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What NOT to shop for this holiday season

December 13, 2016 Blog,Consumer Tips

With the holiday shopping season revving up, it’s a good time for consumers to take a close look at toy safety. Although parents have every right to expect the toys they purchase to be safe, defective toys remain an ongoing problem.

Offering clear evidence that today’s toy products need to be more carefully scrutinized, “The World Against Toys Causing Harm” Inc.(W.A.T.C.H.) recently revealed its nominees for the “10 Worst Toys of 2016” – from the lethal looking Warcraft Doomhammer to a spinning Superman Launcher – addressing why potentially hazardous toys should not be in the hands of children.

“Due to poor design, manufacturing and marketing practices, there are toys available for purchase today with the potential to lead to serious injury and even death,” said W.A.T.C.H. in a press release. The group said it “urges parents and caregivers to take precautions when buying toys” during holiday shopping, which accounts for 65 percent of all annual toy sales. Read More.

According to the Watchdog organization, since January 2015, there have been at least 19 toys with recognized safety defects recalled in the United States. These recalls involved over 800,000 units of toys—five hundred thousand this year alone—and underscore the inadequacy of existing standards.

Consumers can help children enjoy a safer holiday season by learning what traps to avoid when selecting toys. The “10 Worst Toys” list is a hands-on tool for consumers, raising awareness of the different types of potential hazards to avoid while toy shopping.

Here is the list of 2016’s worst toys:

Peppa Pig’s Muddy Puddles Family: Some packages say 3+ and others say 2+ for the same toy, without warning about choking hazards for two-year-olds.

Kids Time Baby Children’s Elephant Pillow: Advertising image shows infant snuggling with pillow, despite pillows for children under one being banned by a federal safety act. Package has no age warnings.

Slimeball Slinger: “Slimeball” projectiles that can be fired “over 30 feet” can cause eye injuries.

Banzai Bump N’ Bounce Body Bumpers: Children shown on package bumping into each other without wearing any of the protective equipment recommended by the manufacturer in small print on the package.

Nerf Rival Apollo Xv-700 Blaster: Potential for eye injuries. Kids are shown wearing masks covering face and eyes, but these items are sold separately.

The Good Dinosaur Galloping Butch: Rigid tail may puncture children’s faces.

Peppy Pups: Strangulation. “Despite the industry’s standard requiring strings on playpen and crib toys to be less than 12 inches in length, manufacturers are permitted to market pull toys like the “Peppy Pup,” with a cord measuring approximately 31 inches.

Flying Heroes Superman Launcher: Spinning flying superman may fly into child’s eye or face.

Baby Magic Feed and Play Baby: With a 2+ age recommendation, the included spoon is small enough to block a child’s airway.

Warcraft Doomhammer: “6-year-old children are encouraged to “feel the power of the horde!” with the “legendary Doomhammer,” based on weaponry in the “Warcraft” movie. The manufacturer offers no warnings regarding potential impact injuries associated with foreseeable use of the heavy, rigid plastic battle hammer.

To learn more about these and other potentially dangerous toys, visit