As shoppers head to the stores to purchase gifts for Christmas, the U.S. Public Interest Research Group has released its annual report on toy safety and recalled toys. Entitled "Trouble in Toyland," the 31st annual toy report from PIRG goes in detail on safety hazards posed by toys and other gifts intended for children, including: bicycles with training wheels, baby items, school supplies, and remote controlled toys, among others. 
The PIRG report includes toys subject to recall from January 2015 to October 2016. PIRG noted that many of the recalled toys may still be found in homes and thus pose a continuing hazard. Consumers are often unaware of recalls of toys. 
According to the report, "Recalls are often not effective in reaching consumers. You may have previously recalled toys at home. We urge you to check our list." The report goes on to say, "In 2014 (the last year for which data are available), there were 251,800 toy-related injuries treated in U.S. hospital emergency departments and 11 toy-related deaths. But despite lingering dangers, in the last 30 years we've come a long way in terms of both policy and compliance with standards."
Among the toys highlighted by the report for toxic substances are the "Minions" locking pencil case and the “Slinky Jr.”, both of which contain chromium. The “Fun Bubbles” jump rope, according to the report, contains phthalate. “Sonic Sound Sizzlers noise magnets” pose an ingestion hazard, while “Vtech Smart Wheels,” “Vtech Smart Animals,” and “Vtech Spin and Learn Color Flashlight” pose a noise hazard.
For further information, see the PIRG website.



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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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