A CNN investigation into toy recalls in the US could have been a happy read. But instead, the result is a sad reminder of how frighteningly easy it can be to injure a child while playing with a toy.
The CNN report documents the total number of toy recalls in the US between the start of December 2014 and the end of September 2017. In total, 1,020 recalls were issued in that period – for a total value of $190 million (including recalls worth around £130 million).
The largest percentage of recalls came during the holiday season: in the last two months of the year, US regulators issued 147 toys with more than a combined $70 million (almost £49 million) worth of toy recalls.
The CNN investigation also discovered that the vast majority of toys recalled during the 2015 holidays were expensive “toys for children under the age of 10” – with all but one ending up back on store shelves.
What’s more, more than a quarter of recalled toy toys were recalled for unsafe amounts of lead paint. Many had been shipped from China (which is the world’s second-largest toy exporter), but many also were from around the US and the world – and there are suspicions that the toys weren’t brought to the US fully tested.
Child safety experts also raise concerns about the use of industry-standard components – such as simple wooden casings – in unlicensed brands which don’t have required product certification.
The CNN report concludes that “the most alarming risk of all is that we might live with toys for years and years, only to get calls from local child protection advocates explaining that a child had been injured or even died as a result of using one of these products.”
We’ve noted several other toy recalls that have recently been issued, so let’s take a closer look at some of the others: