With just a few days until the Easter bunny makes his delivery of chocolate eggs, the Council’s Trading Standards team are taking the opportunity to remind parents of some key safety tips when purchasing soft toys.
- Toys must show the CE mark. This is a claim by the manufacturer that the product will meet essential safety requirements during foreseeable and normal use.
- All toys must be marked with the manufacturer’s name, registered trade name or trade mark and a contact address. If the toy has come from outside the EU the importer’s details must also be on the product.
- Toys must be accompanied by instructions for use, safety information and appropriate warnings for the type of toy. For example, ‘not suitable for children under 36 months’
Some Toys also have the voluntary British Toy and Hobby Association’s (BTHA) ‘Lion Mark’. A condition of BTHA trade association membership is that members’ toys will meet the statutory safety requirements.
- Ensure you read any warnings and instructions carefully and that children are closely supervised by a responsible adult.
- Make sure the toys are suitable for the age of the child. Check the toy periodically for wear such as exposed filling material or loose small parts.
Any loose parts that come off easily can be a choking hazard to young children. Eyes and ribbons that are loose, stitching coming apart and large amounts of fur falling off the toy can all be a hazard. Feel around the toy looking for any sharp edges or any entrapments. If you are at all unsure, do not give the toy to a child.
If you have any concerns about a product you’ve purchased, please report it to Trading Standards via the Citizens Advice Consumer helpline by calling 03454 040506. You can also report concerns online, via the Citizens Advice website.
For further advice, visit The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents website.