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December is Safe Toys and Gifts Month

California parents can understand the importance of buying their children safe, age-appropriate toys during the upcoming holiday season. Unfortunately, even the most conscientious parents can unwittingly purchase a dangerous product, or their children can suffer an injury due to a hazardous toy at a friend’s home or child care facility. It is important to understand your rights when it comes to faulty or dangerous products made for children.

Every year, thousands of children suffer injuries from dangerous toys, and manufacturers recall millions of toys due to safety issues. Because eye injuries are among the most common types of incidents involving dangerous toys, Prevent Blindness America has designated December as Safe Toys and Gifts Month. You, other parents, teachers and child care providers can reduce the risk of a serious injury involving a toy in the following ways:

  • Check the Consumer Reports website and look for news updates regarding accidents and recalls involving a particular toy.
  • Provide adequate adult supervision when children are playing with toys.
  • Thoroughly read the safety instructions and show children how to safely use a toy with moving or pointed parts.
  • Give children age-appropriate toys and products.
  • Inspect toys for potentially hazardous elements, such as flimsy construction, projectile parts and broken pieces.

Even when you are careful, your child may be injured by a toy’s defective manufacturing or marketing – for example, the toy wasn’t properly tested for safety or lacks detailed instructions on how to prevent injuries. Or, your child’s teacher or child care provider may fail to observe the safety tips above and give your child a defective toy or one inappropriate for his or her age.

The holidays can be exciting for children, but also potentially dangerous. It may be necessary to take legal action if a faulty product or a care provider’s negligent supervision caused your child harm.

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