Originally created 11/26/03

'Tis the season to check government's toy recall list



WASHINGTON -- The government is urging consumers who got an early start on their holiday shopping to make sure the items they bought haven't been recalled for safety reasons.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission is releasing its annual top 10 list of children's product safety recalls to coincide with the start of the holiday shopping season.

"They should be off store shelves," CPSC Chairman Hal Stratton said. But "it may very well be that people still have these at home, so we kind of use Christmas as a reminder."

Most of the products on the list are toys that were recalled in 2003, but there also are five brands of playpens that can collapse. The playpens, which the commission blames for 15 deaths, have turned up on the list in previous years.

The CPSC has a new Web site with the latest information on all government recalls. Consumers can log on to www.Recalls.gov to learn about recalls of consumer goods, automobiles, boats, drugs, cosmetics and environmental products.

The CPSC's list of top recalled children's toys and products includes:

-300,000 Magic Start Crawl 'n Stand toys by Playskool. The toy is supposed to help crawling babies pull themselves up and stand, but can tip over during use. There have been 26 reports of babies suffering injuries.

-1.3 million cans of Spit Smatter spray foam by JAKKS Pacific Inc. of Malibu, Calif. The aerosol cans can forcefully break apart, potentially causing serious injury.

-67,000 Little People Animal Sounds Farm toys distributed by Fisher-Price of East Aurora, N.Y., because two small metal screws that hold the stall doors in place can come off, posing a choking hazard to young children.

-1.2 million Cosco Arriva and Turnabout Infant Car Seats/Carriers distributed by Dorel Juvenile Group Inc. Handle locks can break or unexpectedly release from the carrying position, causing the seat to unlatch or flip forward. Nine children have been injured.

-85,000 scooters and mini-bikes recalled by Fisher-Price because the motor control circuits can malfunction, causing the machines to continue running after the power or throttle button is released, leading to possible injuries.

Consumers can get a full list of the recalled products by calling 800-638-2772 or visiting the CPSC Web site.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission's top 10 recalled children's products:

-40,000 Woody Dolls, distributed by Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. The doll's clothing has buttons that can detach, posing a choking hazard for young children.

-67,000 Little People Animal Sounds Farm distributed by Fisher-Price. Two small metal screws that hold the stall doors in place can come off, posing a choking hazard to young children.

-300,000 drum sets distributed by Battat Inc. The end piece of the drumstick can break off, posing a choking hazard to young children. The screw at the end of the drumstick can loosen and detach, also posing a choking hazard.

-30,000 scooters and 55,000 mini-bikes by Fisher-Price. The motor control circuits can malfunction, causing the machines to continue running even after the power or throttle button is released. Fisher-Price has received 56 reports of incidents with scooters and 24 reports of mini-bikes incident; one child suffered a broken arm.

-1.2 million Cosco Arriva and Turnabout Infant Car Seats/Carriers distributed by Dorel Juvenile Group Inc. Handle locks can break or unexpectedly release from the carrying position, causing the seat to unlatch or flip forward. Nine children have been injured.

-1.3 million cans of Spit Smatter Spray Foam by JAKKS Pacific Inc. The aerosol cans can forcefully break apart, posing a risk of serious injury.

-300,000 Magic Start Crawl 'n Stand by Playskool. The toy is supposed to encourage crawling babies to pull themselves up and stand, but it can tip over during use. There have been 26 reports of babies suffering injuries, including one minor concussion.

-538,000 Pack 'n Play portable play yards with raised changing tables by Graco Children's Products. Children can become trapped between the changing table and play yard rail, posing a strangulation hazard. A 13-month-old was strangled when she became trapped.

-1.5 million playpens that can collapse, under different brand names: Evenflo Happy Camper, Happy Cabana and Kiddie Camper; Century Fold-N-Go Models 10-710 and 10-810; Baby Trend Home and Roam and Baby Express; and Kolcraft Playskool Travel-Lite Model. CPSC is aware of 15 deaths to children. CPSC also issued a safety warning about All Our Kids Models 742 and 762 playpens imported by a firm that is out of business.

-26,000 packages of multicolored sidewalk chalk imported by Target Corp. The chalk contains high levels of lead, posing a risk of poisoning to young children.

On the Net:

Consumer Product Safety Commission: http://www.cpsc.gov

Recalls: http://www.recalls.gov