BOSTON (CBS) – With the holiday season right around the corner, children will be opening plenty of new toys. But on Wednesday one Boston-based group released its annual list of the toys parents should avoid giving.
World Against Toys Causing Harm (W.A.T.C.H) released its “10 Worst Toys” list, which it has done every holiday season since 1973. The list chronicles the organization’s choice for the most dangerous toys on the market.
Complete List: W.A.T.C.H.’s ’10 Worst Toys’for 2014
“Dangerous toys continue to abound in toy boxes and on store shelves. The alarming number of toy recalls and the lack of pre-market testing and regulations in the toy industry are evidence of the need for continued vigilance for the safety of children,” the group writes on its website.
Among this year’s dangerous toys, according to W.A.T.C.H., is a “Catapencil,” which is a pencil with a catapult attached on the eraser side. The toy’s package says it is built so children can have “target practice for your desktop.”
The list also encourages gift buyers to steer clear of the SWAT Team electric machine gun, recommended for children five and up, because W.A.T.C.H. said “Detailed replicas have resulted in a number of deaths through the years and should never be sold as toys.”
Toys for infants are also on the list, including the LiL’ Cutesies Best Friends doll that the group said can be a choking hazard and a colored hedgehog from Toys R Us that presents a similar danger.
In anticipation of the Wednesday release of the annual toy list, the Toy Industry Association released a statement of its own.
The group said that groups like W.A.T.C.H. “take advantage of the high visibility of toys during the holiday season.”
“The toy industry works in close cooperation with government agencies such as the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and U.S. Customs and Border Protection, medical experts, consumer groups and others who can help us meaningfully enhance the safety of our industry’s products,” the Toy Industry Association said.
“We are especially proud that the CPSC, the federal agency responsible for monitoring the safety of toys, consistently ranks toys among the safest of 15 consumer product categories commonly found in the home … this is a report that parents and families can trust.”
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