Today, CPSC released their latest available statistics on deaths and injuries associated with toys. This report briefly provides updated summary information on toy-related fatalities for the years of 2006 and 2007, as well as gives detailed information on toy related fatalities for 2008.
In 2008, there were an estimated 235,300 toy-related injuries among children younger than 15 years of age treated in hospital emergency rooms. Children under five were rushed to the emergency room for toy-related injuries 82,300 times. There were 19 deaths reported. Thirteen of the deaths were to children under age 5. Riding toys, rubber balls, and balloons were the items most often involved in deaths. Riding toys, including tricycles, non-motorized scooters, were actually the leading cause of deaths and injuries (26%).
An estimated 47% of emergency department treated injuries were classified as lacerations, contusions, or abrasion; while 45% of all injuries treated occurred to the head and face area. Most deaths were from drowning, motor vehicle involvement, or airway obstruction from a small toy or a small part of a toy.
CPSC also reported on toy recalls, showing they had declined this year and attributed that to the increased funding and authority CPSC received through CPSIA and manufacturers’ compliance with safety standards.
These statistics are a reminder that helmets and safety gear should be worn at all times and be sized to fit, all plastic wrappings, un-inflated and or broken balloons should be discarded immediately and kept away from children. In addition, parents should avoid toys with small parts, which can cause choking, and that toys should be age appropriate. Please report all problems with toy products to the manufacturer and CPSC.