Toy Safety

Dec 04, 2017

Each year, children are treated in emergency rooms for a toyrelated injury. Nearly half of the injuries seen are related to children age 4 and under. When purchasing a toy or game, consider the age of the child. It is best to read the warning signs on the box to check if the toy or game will be age appropriate. For young children, make sure the toy or game does not have small parts that could cause a potential choking hazard. Make sure the toy meets the national safety standards by looking for the letters “ASTM”. These letters show the toy has been tested for normal intended use and for reasonable foreseeable abuse. Watch for toys with strings, straps or cords that could wrap around a child’s neck and cause potential abrasions or strangulation.

Ensure there are no holes or hinges that could catch small fingers when putting toys in a storage bin or container after play time. Throw away damaged toys.

If you are buying a tricycle, bike or other riding toys, be sure to remember to purchase a helmet along with it. Include a Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) certified helmet to keep them safe while they are having fun.

Safe Kids compiles product safety recalls specific to children and sends twice-monthly email alerts for recent recalls. Sign up for the email alerts at www.safekids.org.

For additional information about product recalls related to children, go to www.recalls.gov. For a toy safety tip sheets, visit www.kentuckycchc.org. You may call the toll-free CCHC helpline at: 1-877-281-5277 for information on toy safety in child care.

922 KAR 2:120. Section 6. Sleeping and Napping Requirements.
(3) Rest time shall include adequate space specified by the child’s age as follows:
(a) For an infant: 3. No loose bedding; and 4. No toys or other items except the infant’s pacifier;

The regulation also states no toys or other items except for the infant’s pacifier in the specified space. The infant’s pacifier must not be attached to a clip. Cuddly blankets are not allowed. Bumper pads and pillows must not be used in a crib.

Mobiles are not recommended. If the mobile is positioned so that it is not in the crib and the mobile has not been recalled by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, this would comply with the regulations. If a child can access the mobile while in the bed it should be removed.

922 KAR 2:120. Section 11. Toys and Furnishings.
(4) Toys and other items that are considered mouth contact surfaces by a child not toilet trained shall be sanitized daily by:
(a) Scrubbing in warm, soapy water using a brush to reach into crevices;
(b) Rinsing in clean water;
(c) Submerging in a sanitizing solution for at least two (2) minutes; and
(d) Air dried

Sanitizing toys and other items is especially important in infant and toddler programs and sometimes a twoyear room. The regulation states that toys that may be placed in a child’s mouth must be cleaned daily; however, remind staff that if a child is observed with a toy in their mouth, the toy should be removed from the area and not used again until it can be cleaned.

Staff may use small buckets to clean the toys, i.e., one bucket of soapy water, one bucket of clean water for rinsing and one bucket with a sanitizing solution.

Article posted in the December 2017 ECE-Insider, a publication of the Kentucky Division of Child Care.