HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) – Doctors at Connecticut Children’s are raising awareness this holiday season of dangerous toys gifted to children.
Roughly 200,000 children are rushed to the emergency room for toy-related injuries each year, and the worst part is that they are all preventable as long as parents have the information they need to keep the hazardous toys in their kid’s hands.
Inflated balloons are not a hazard to kids, but deflated, remnants are among the most common choking hazards for children.
“A baby or child crawling on the floor, swallowed, that’s a trip to the emergency room,” said Senator Richard Blumenthal.
Senator Richard Blumenthal joined doctors at Connecticut Children’s to highlight a new national report titled “Trouble in Toyland.” It serves are a warning to parents looking for a nice toy. Emergency rooms across the country last year reported 198,000 toy-related injuries overall.
There were 9 deaths and 40% of injuries involved children under the age of 5.
“More often than parents would think,” said Dr. Steven Rogers. “We have a trust in the people who sell these toys, but they are out to make money, they aren’t thinking necessarily about safety first, so we have to do that.”
Dr. Steven Rogers said parents should be aware of magnets, button batteries and choose age-appropriate toys. Also, parents should be careful with web-connected toys that record audio that could put their personal information at risk of being stolen.
“There are hidden dangers,” Dr. Rogers said. “I always encourage parents to play with toys and inspect them before allowing the kid to play with them.”
Parents should be extra cautious purchasing toys online. It’s illegal to sell recalled toys, but Blumenthal says 75% are available for purchase on Facebook Marketplace.
The “Trouble in Toyland” report also advocates for Congress to pass the Inform Consumers Act, which was introduced last year with the goal of stopping sales of dangerous and counterfeit toys, requiring online marketplaces to verify seller information so bad actors can’t deceive consumers.
To see the full report, click here.