12 tips to help consumers shop safely for children’s presents this Christmas Image by olly AdobeStock_224380338

12 tips to help consumers shop safely for children’s presents this Christmas

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, the Chartered Trading Standards Institute, Netmums, and the Child Accident Prevention Trust – and Santa – are helping the Office for Product Safety and Standards warn against second rate toys.

No one wants to take a risk with toy safety, so always bear in mind 12 tips when buying for children:

  1. Look for the CE symbol: This means the manufacturer has assessed the toy for safety. Find the symbol on the label or box
  2. Check it’s for kids: Festive novelties can look like toys. Keep them away from kids
  3. Reputation matters: Check the suppliers who have a good reputation for safe and reliable toys. They’ll have good safety standards and refund policies
  4. Button battery safety: Christmas toys may have button batteries – which can prove lethal if ingested. Check they are screwed in safely before giving to a child
  5. Check age restrictions: Toys must be clearly marked with age restrictions, which assess risks such as choking hazards. Always follow the age recommendations
  6. Consider special needs: Remember that children with special needs might be more vulnerable, and make sure to shop accordingly
  7. Choking hazards: Avoid toys with small parts or loose fabric – they can be a choking hazard
  8. Loose parts: Loose ribbons on toys and costumes can be dangerous. Think before you buy
  9. Inspect toy boxes: Wear and tear can make a toy unsafe. Check your children’s toys and get them repaired if necessary
  10. Supervise when you need to: Some toys need an adult on hand during playtime. Read all the instructions so you can keep things under control
  11. Tidy up: Boxes, plastic bags and wire can be a hazard. Clear away all packaging once everything’s unwrapped
  12. Celebrate a safe Christmas: Completing these checks can save you a lot of stress later. Remember to get batteries (and dispose of these safely too)!

Help spread the word by downloading the materials from the Office for Product Safety and Standards consumer campaigns page.

You can follow the campaign on Twitter @OfficeforSandS – use #santasafety to retweet.