The consumer toy watchdog group, World Against Toys Causing Harm, Inc. (W.A.T.C.H.) has issued its annual “10 Worst Toys” list naming toys with the potential to cause childhood injuries or even death.
- Magnetic Fishing Game, manufactured by Kole Imports and sold through online retailer, Amazon.com. While there is a warning of a choking hazard, the toy is recommended for ages 16 months and up online while the packaging indicates not for children under three years of age. THe plastic fishing pole uses common twine to attach a small, magnetic lure. The brightly-colored plastic lure, whether detached or connected to the approximately 9 inch long cord poses a serious choking hazard for oral-age children.
- Bongo Ball, manufactured and sold by Toys R Us. Children as young as 3 years old are encouraged to climb inside the colorful inflatable ball. The box portrays unsupervised kids playing with the oversized inflatable ball, but cautions that adult supervision is required. A warning on the toy only recommends adult supervision.
- Dart Zone Quick Fire 12 Dart Gun, manufactured by Prime Time Toys and sold through online retailers, including Amazon.com and Sears.com. Children are encouraged to load an ammunition cartridge and fire six darts in seconds. Though the manufacturer advised the toy is not for children younger than six years old, it was marketed online for babies as young as seven months old. The gun, which has two revolving barrels, can shoot the supplied darts with enough force to cause eye injuries.
- Spinner Shark 4-Wheel Kneeboard, manufactured by FuzionNextsport and sold at WalMart and on Amazon.com. The wooden kneeboard sits four inches off the ground. Users are encouraged to race by kneeling on the board and steering with the handlebars. The toy’s low profile makes it hazardous for outdoor use – a detachable safety flag is included. There is potential for impact injuries.
- Explore & Learn Helicopter, manufactured by VTech and sold by Target, Walmart.com, ToysRUs.com, Kohl’s.com, Sears.com, Kmart.com and Amazon.com. There is the potential for crib and playpen injuries due to the long cord, measuring almost 24 inches. The toy is intended for babies as young as 12 months old.
- N-Force Vendetta Double Sword, manufactured by Hasbro and sold by Target, ToysRUs.com and Walmart.com. The double sword, recommended for ages eight and up, measures 4.5 feet long and the blade has potential to cause facial or other impact injuries.
- Water Balloon Launcher, manufactured by Water Sports, LLC and sold by Amazon.com. The toy has conflicting age recommendations. To toy is recommend for ages eight to 15 months online but for ages 16 and up on the packaging. The manufacturer warning notes that this product can cause severe injury or facial damage if hit in the face, eye or ears. The launcher has the capability of shooting water balloons at high speeds estimated up to 75 mph. Also considered a significant choking hazard for oral-age children.
- Power Rangers Super Samurai Shogun Helmet, manufactured by Bandai and sold by Target, Kmart.com and Amazon.com. The helmet includes a detachable crown with pointed, rigid plastic tips as long as nine inches. There is the potential risk of penetrating impact and puncture wound injuries.
- Playful Xylophone, manufactured by P’Kolino and sold by Magic Beans. Colorful blocks in varying sizes can be arranged and rearranged allowing children 12 months or older to create their own melodies. The detached five inch wooden drumstick could obstruct an child’s airway.
- The Avengers Gamma Green Smash Fists, manufactured by Hasbro and sold by Target, Kohls.com and Amazon.com. The oversized fists are sold to children as young as three years old. No warnings are provided and children are told to smash everything in their way running, the risk of sustaining blunt force injuries.