As the year end approaches the “best of 2006” lists start popping. But instead of covering the “best” the W.A.T.C.H. Group (World Against Toys Causing Harm) published a list with the “Most Dangerous Toys of 2006”. Some of those toys are not THAT scary, but we should pay attention nonetheless due to the lack of safety warnings or misleading marketing tactics.
- Heelys: the popular shoes that come in wheels at the heels. WATCH claims that the “skates” are marketed to children that are unaware of the risks and that no protective equipment is used as a consequence. At least the manufacturer is giving out a clear safety warning: “risk of SERIOUS BODILY HARM, including head injury, spinal injury, or even death”…
- Z Launcher: the toy is a water balloon launcher, capable of launching balloons up to 100 feet with “direct hit accuracy” (man, that sounds cool…). WATCH claims that the toy could provoke facial and choking injuries.
- Pram Decoration: a patch of blossoms that is sold to be placed on a stroller or on a crib. Strangely, though, there is a warning stating “Do not attach to a crib or playpen” and “Children might become entangled in the string”. I would think twice before using that stuff for my kids.
- Pyramid Stacker: a toy composed of multicolored pieces that are stacked one upon the other. Now I am not sure how dangerous this object can be, but WATCH is warning against “blunt impact and potential injuries”.
- Bow & Arrow Set: the safety warning says it all: “Recommended for target shooting only”. The set comes with rubber-tipped, solid wood arrows. The rubbers, however, can be removed…
- Zip-Ity Do Dolly: the doll has the objective to create learning experiences for the young children, including buttoning and zipping. There are many detachable pieces, which could be eaten by kids, and the toy is marketed for “Ages 1 and up”.
- Lil Snoopy: a dog that can be placed on cribs or playpens. The toy, however, comes with a 27” long cord, which could create potential strangulations and entanglement injuries.
- Superman Lamp: it is a colorful lamp that could possibly generate shock injuries for young children. The object, in fact, comes with a warning stating: “This is an electric product – not a toy! To avoid risk of fire, burns, personal injury and electric shock it should not be played with or placed where small children can reach it”.
- Sky Blaster: the best definition is “All in one rocket launcher”. WATCH claims that the toy could result in eye injuries (no kidding). Then again the manufacturer has a clear warning: “Do not to aim at the eyes or face of a person as an injury could result”.
- Fear Factor Candy Challenge: the product encourages kids to engage in a competition to eat weird stuff. Inspired on the television program children will find inside “spine-chilling spiders”, “mystery meat” and other grotesque food. WATCH warns that it could cause ingestion injuries.