DETROIT (WWJ) – Before you start that holiday shopping, consumer groups are warning that these toys are on their naughty list.
Baby rattles, scooters, purses and pacifier clips are just some of the items recalled this holiday season. But consumers can unknowingly still buy them — even if they’ve already been pulled from store shelves.
The Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) Education Fund on Tuesday released its 31st annual “Trouble in Toyland” report, which aims to help consumers be aware of potentially hazardous toys during this year’s holiday shopping season.
Click here to see the list (.pdf format)
The report lists toys recalled by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) from January 2015 to October 2016 with the message that these recalled toys may still be in homes. For large items such as cars, when they get recalled, owners will usually be contacted immediately through VIN numbers. However, that’s not the case with toy recalls.
Some toy recalls are not well-publicized, so parents should check their homes for previously recalled toys. Also, keep in mind that recalled toys may still be available online — especially on sites like Ebay and Craigslist, where the seller might not be aware of the recall.
Some of the recalled toys researchers found were still available for sale at online stores include:
• a toy glockenspiel that was recalled in February due to high levels of lead in the paint. If the paint is scraped off and ingested, lead can cause adverse health effects.
• a remote-controlled flying toy which was recalled in June. The toy’s USB charging cord can overheat, posing a hazard.
• a pencil case containing two magnets that hold the case lid closed that can detach, posing an ingestion hazard. If the magnets are swallowed, they can link together inside a child’s intestines and result in serious internal injuries.
Beaumont Trauma Surgeon Kurt Kralovich sees an increase in battery injuries this time of year.
“Probably more common than anything is burns of the mouth, the tongue, the lips. Kids kind of hold it in their mouth for a little while and when it starts to burn or get hot, they spit it out,” he told WWJ’s Laura Bonnell. “If they do manage to swallow it or ingest it, the batteries can give them a bad tummy ache and they’ll come in not necessarily even knowing it’s trauma in the beginning. But you get an X-ray and you see a very characteristic shape.”
It is illegal to sell a recalled product under government rules. PIRG has notified the CPSC about these potentially illegal sales and have asked them to investigate these toys further and take appropriate action.
For more than 30 years, the “Trouble in Toyland” report has offered safety guidelines for purchasing toys for small children. Over the years, the reports have led to more than 150 recalls and other enforcement actions.