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dangerous toys, Holiday toys, Chicago product liability attorney‘Tis the season for remote control cars, bicycles, action figures, kitchen sets, and so much more. But how many of the toys that are purchased this holiday season present a real danger to children? World Against Toys Causing Harm (WATCH) has recently given their list of the top 10 most dangerous toys of the season, but there may be many more.

Toy Safety Requirements

According to the Toy Industry Association, every toy sold on shelves in America undergoes some of the strictest safety requirements in the world. Some are even said to go through 100 different safety tests, standards, and certifications conducted by independent, federally approved testing labs. Yet countless toys have made it through the purported filtering system, only to cause injury or death, and then be recalled after the fact. And, even though the Toy Industry Association says that WATCH does not actually test the toys it names, parents are left to wonder just how safe the toys really are.

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Graco carseat recall, Chicago product liability law firmIn the largest car seat recall in U.S. history, Graco is being fined for not disclosing defects in over six million car seats. Defects in children’s car seats are a safety hazard and a product liability. Parents put their confidence in the car seat manufacturers to ensure that the car seats are safe and reliable. Knowing about a defect and not alerting consumers in a timely manner is a product liability and the manufacturer should be held responsible.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) started an investigation in December 2014 due to a high volume of complaints that the latch on their car seats are too hard to unlatch. The defect has been connected with one death in California and has stemmed over 6,000 complaints.

NHTSA reported that Graco knew about the defect and were slow to tell consumers and recall their car seats. Federal regulations state manufacturers are required to report defects within five days of discovering them. They fined Graco $3 million to be paid immediately to the U.S. Treasury and are required to pay $7 million if they do not spend the same amount over the next five years to improve the safety of their car seats.

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toy related injuries, Illinois product liability lawyerThe most active retail months are barely over and toy manufacturers have generated billions upon billions in revenue worldwide. The estimated cost for toy production is over two billion dollars in the United States alone as last reported in 2010. It is a booming industry that may be growing faster than safety officials can monitor.

Toys have evolved over time to include detailed parts and extra gadgets that require additional testing for their safety. They are packaged with age limit recommendations to keep babies and toddlers from choking on small pieces, but there are also unforeseen hazards in toys manufactured today which include:

  • Asbestos;
  • Carcinogens;
  • Lead; and
  • Product defectiveness.

The American Association for Justice reports a 54 percent increase of toy-related injuries from 1999-2008 ranging from choking to amputations to asphyxiation. The number of toys hitting the market largely outnumber the resources for inspection and safety tests available via the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

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