The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has been passing and enforcing stricter rules when it comes to toy safety. As a result, fewer children have been injured by defective toys in the U.S. this year, a trend the CPSC expects to continue through the holiday season.
In 2010, about 181,500 children were injured and 17 were killed in toy-related accidents. Most injuries were suffered on riding toys, like scooters, and involved either bruises and scrapes or head injuries. Stricter safety standards for these toys have helped decrease some of the risks, but parents are still encouraged to put helmets and pads on children who ride scooters, bicycles, skateboards, and similar toys. Helmets in particular help protect a child’s growing brain from traumatic brain injuries.
Other toys that have caused injuries in recent years had unacceptably high levels of toxic heavy metals, like lead or cadmium. Several new CPSC regulations target the use of heavy metals in children’s toys, requiring toy manufacturers to eliminate or strictly limit the use of lead and similar toxins in toy making.