Safety should come first when you're shopping for toys for kids. Once you’ve made sure they are safe, then you can focus on the fun. Some toys aren't properly labelled and could pose a danger to your children. This is why the World Against Toys Causing Harm (WATCH), a non-profit organisation that educates the public about toy safety, issued a list of the most dangerous toys of 2016 to help parents make informed choices.
1. Peppa Pig's Muddy Puddles Family
This set of four figurines is marked for ages three and up, and has a printed warning on the front to warn of possible choking hazard, but the same toys are also sold for ages two and up (oral-age children) with no warning.
2. Kids Time Baby Children's Elephant Pillow
He might look cute and cuddly, but this stuffed animal is marked for infants without any warnings or age recommendations on the product. The pillows can block a baby's mouth, causing them to suffocate, and infant pillows and similar articles are banned for children under one year of age.
3. Slime Ball Slinger
This slingshot will launch a ‘slime ball’ over 30 feet, which might excite your kids, but projectiles with that much force have the potential to cause serious eye injuries.
4. Banzai Bump N' Bounce Body Bumpers
As you can see on the packaging, children as young as four years’ old are encouraged to use these bumper balloons without protective gear (such as helmets or elbow pads). There is a warning on the inside of the package, but if your little ones are impacted or bumped hard they could be seriously injured.
5. Nerf Rival Apollo XV-700 Blaster
Kids over the age of 14 are encouraged to perform ‘intense head-to-head competition’ with this ‘blaster’, but WATCH points out that the ammunition in the package could shoot with enough force to cause eye injuries. Face masks are shown on the box, but these have to be purchased separately.
6. The Good Dinosaur Galloping Butch
The tail on this dinosaur is meant to be pushed in order to make it run, but it's very pointy and could cause a puncture wound for a child as young as three.
7. Peppy Pups
Look out for the leash on this little pup's collar: The industry standard for crib toys says strings must be less than 12 inches in length, but this one is a whopping 31 inches long.
8. Flying Heroes Superman Launcher
If Superman soars too close to your child's face, the wings could cause serious eye and facial injuries. There's a warning not to aim it at your face, but children as young as four years’ old shouldn't be using the product without adult supervision.
9. Baby Magic Feed and Play Baby
Baby comes with a baby bottle, high chair, blanket, foot dish and an interactive spoon that could prove very dangerous – the plastic spoon is slender enough that your child could swallow it and choke.
10. Warcraft Doomhammer
Unfortunately, this ‘doom’ hammer doesn't provide any sort of warning about the potential for impact injuries, in fact it encourages them. Protect your kids from any blunt injuries by steering clear of this toy.