Today Toys “R” Us, Inc. announced the launch of their national Product Safety Vigilance Program. This program will encourage consumers to take important steps to become advocates for children’s safety. Included in the program is the “Eight Steps to Keep Kids Safe,” including a product recall list, (or use KID’s here) that parents can use to keep track of gifts and purchases for their children. In the event of a recall, these tools help parents to quickly remove any dangerous products from their home.

The program is working in conjunction with the Toys R Us “Great Trade-In” event which provides saving incentives towards the purchase of new products upon turning in potentially unsafe children’s products. If your crib is drop-side design or doesn’t meet safe crib guidelines, consider using this opportunity to purchase a new fixed side crib.

In general, less than 30% of affected items are returned when a baby product is recalled, meaning millions of unsafe products could still be in the marketplace.

“It’s crucial that parents have the most current information available about the products in use in their homes, so they can react quickly and appropriately in the event of a recall,” said Nancy A. Cowles, Executive Director, Kids In Danger. “By providing parents with the tools and resources needed to track important product information and heightening awareness of product recalls, the Toys“R”Us Product Safety Vigilance Program, coupled with the ‘Great Trade-In’ event, are valuable assets to parents and caregivers in their efforts to keep children safe.”

Another resource mentioned by Toys”R”US is the new requirement that manufacturers include a product registration card with new nursery products such as cribs, strollers and high chairs. You can learn more about that with KID’s and Consumer Federation of America’s new brochure on product registration.

While the best way to keep children safe from recalled products is to stop the flow of unsafe products into the marketplace, these steps to make recalls more effective are vital. You can sign up for KID’s monthly email alert listing recalls here or get immediate recall notices from CPSC here.