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Latest Product and Safety News

Safe Kids Worldwide is committed to bringing you the latest in product and safety news. Information on consumer concerns important to child safety will be provided bimonthly. Be sure to sign up for our Product Recall Newsletter to get this information delivered to your inbox!

May 2015

Colorado Action Alert

VSafe Kids Worldwide issued an action alert urging the Colorado Governor to veto two bills passed in the Colorado legislature that would remove power from municipalities to better ensure the safety of children with the use of safety cameras. You can read the letter on our public policy library here. and tweet the Governor your veto request at @hickforco.

Researchers: Parents should put electronic devices away on playground

Every year there are more than 200,000 children treated for playground related injury rooms according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Doctors and researchers are now recommending that parents put away their phones and other electronic devices while at the playground with their children as these devices pull attention away from the child. &ldquo:Children are smart and they definitely check whether parents are distracted prior to taking that risky behavior so we know they are more likely to take the risk when their parents aren&rsquo:t paying attention to them,": said Dr. Elaine Schulte of the Cleveland Clinic.

Many recalled children's products still for sale online

An investigation by KGW in Portland, Oregon has found that many products for children that have been recalled are still available for sale online, especially in the second hand market. These items include strollers, baby seats or cribs. Before buying items check the Consumer Products Safety Commission's searchable recall database here.

Did you know sunscreen has an expiration date?
Everyone knows that food expires, but other products in a child's environment also have an expiration date. Regularly, you should check if such products are still good to use. The items include car seats, sunscreen, fire and carbon monoxide detectors/alarms and helmets.

Safe Kids Federal Highway Law Wishlist

For the second year in a row, Safe Kids has provided Congress with its priorities for new federal highway legislation which funds all road safety programs. The letter was joined by 84 Safe Kids coalitions and focused on child passenger safety, teen driving, and bike and pedestrian safety.

House funding bill says to hold steady on heatstroke awareness

Safe Kids was successful in encouraging the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee to press for continued awareness and vigilance on the heatstroke risk which has already left two small children dead in hot cars this season.

Winners Announced for CPSC CO poster contest

An 8th grader from California named Frankie won the top prize for his poster submission warning about the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning. His poster summons recollections of horror films from the last century.
You can see the other winners here.

A few more reminders:

April 2015

Many consumers are confused about what happens during a recall, and few people are interested enough to actually read them or take action. A well-publicized recall is just the tip of the iceberg. Recalls can affect you and your family’s health and safety, so it’s a good idea to understand them. Some of the products you buy for your children are among the most important you will ever purchase.

Florida Safety Alert: State Pool Safety in Danger

The Florida legislature adjourned its session this past week without resolving an issue which left the state Department of Health powerless to inspect the state’s 63,000 public pools, other than for water quality. Since April 2014, 95,000 citations were issued about unsafe pools. Safe Kids urged Floridians in an action alert to tell legislators in the State Senate to support the Health Department’s role, but the legislature left Tallahassee without correcting the problem. Safe Kids and its Florida coalitions worked with the following on the effort: Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Abbey’s Hope and the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals on the effort. Orlando’s ABC TV station reported on the issue.

U.S. DOT Hosts a Brainstorming Session to Boost Action on Recalls

On Tuesday, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) hosted a brainstorming session that brought together leading transportation officials, automotive industry representatives, safety advocates and researchers. The purpose of the event was to examine how to increase unacceptably low recall completion rates, and getting consumers to take actions to check remedies when there is a recall. “Recalls are only successful and can only save lives if they end up getting the cars fixed, but we know that 20 percent of vehicles that are recalled – and possibly more than that – go unrepaired,” said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “This is a safety risk to the drivers of those vehicles and all the people they share they share the road with, too.” In 2014, NHTSA had a record number of vehicle recalls, involving 63.9 million vehicles and 3.8 million car seats by Graco and other manufacturers.

First Graders Receive Fire Safety Lessons, Smoke Detectors

First graders from West Milford Elementary School were visited by CONSOL Energy and the Clarksburg Fire Department, where they learned about when to call 911, how a smoke detector works, and how to stay safe in a fire. Each child also received a free smoke detector. This is part of Operation "Not One More," which was started following a fire which claimed the lives of two children earlier this year. By the end of this school year, 850 first graders in Harrison County will receive smoke detectors for their homes. The program will be on-going for first graders every school year.

Chesterfield Township, MI to Host Car Seat Safety Event, Find a Child Safety Event Near You

The fire department on 23 Mile Road in Chesterfield is hosting a child safety event on May 3rd, between 11 am and 2 pm. The event will aim to help educate children and adults on specific hazards as vacation season approaches. There will be fire safety demonstrations and the department will provide free helmets for children. To find a child safety event near you follow this link.

Two Listeria Recalls Raise Concerns About Food Safety

Two major food recalls in recent weeks have heightened concern about listeria contamination. Blue Bell Creameries recalled more than 25 of its ice cream products in the last month after several people got sick and three deaths were reported. This week, Sabra announced a recall of its classic hummus because of possible listeria contamination. These two products tested positive for the food-borne bacteria listeria monocytogenes, which is potentially fatal and can affect the elderly, pregnant women, babies and those with compromised immune systems. The illness is usually treated with antibiotics. The FDA has more information on its website, including a complete list of products affected by the recalls.

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration on Buzzfeed to Promote Teen Driving

NHTSA has taken to Buzzfeed to instill important safety measures in teens with “10 Facts That Will Change Your Driving Habits.” No. 2 is “10% of drives involved in fatal crashes were distracted at the time of the crash.” No. 4 is “Sending or receiving a text takes a driver’s eyes of the road for 4.6 seconds.”

Fire Departments in Maine, Virginia and Arizona to be Honored for Excellence in EMS

The Congressional Fire Services Institute and Masimo (a medical technology company) are honoring the Caribou (ME) Fire and Ambulance Department, County of Henrico (VA) Division of Fire and the City of Scottsdale (AZ) Fire Department for excellent emergency medical services. This award recognizes innovation in fire service based emergency medical care.

Wratburg, Tennessee 2nd Grader Raises Money for Detectors after Best Friend Dies of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Britt Perkins, 2nd grader in Wratburg, TN, is on a mission to raise enough money to buy his entire elementary school carbon monoxide detectors after his best friend and classmate died of CO poisoning.

A few more reminders:

March 2015

Safe Kids Weighs in on Rule on Window Blinds

For 30 years, the CPSC, consumer advocates has sought to work with the window blind industry to make their products, which can cause a child to strangle in the cords. Safe Kids advocated in favor of a rule requiring the industry to make blinds safer. The comment is available here.

CPSC Chairman Elliot Kaye on Dangerous Floor Product

In a video message, Consumer Product Safety Commission Chairman Elliot Kaye made a statement about dangers involving laminate flooring products. He began his statement by introducing himself as a parent first and foremost. The flooring may include high levels of chemicals which could cause cancer. Chairman Kaye said that the company has been cooperative in it investigation.

New Mexico DoT Gets Award for Child Safety Seat Education

The New Mexico Department of Transportation, Traffic Safety Division and Safer New Mexico Now organizations recently awarded Luna County Parents as Teachers the Commitment to Excellence Award in Santa Fe for providing education and instruction on child safety seat use and installation. Classes are thought in both English and Spanish.

Brunswick County Volunteers Install Smoke Alarms Countywide

After two fires took the lives of five people in Brunswick County in North Carolina in the past few months more than 150 volunteers have come together to make sure that all residents of the county have working fire alarms. Four of the people who died were living in houses with no working alarm. Volunteers have also been educating residents on how to prepare for fire related emergencies.

FDNY Hands Out Pamphlets Titled "Fire Safety for Jewish Observances"

After the deadly fire that killed 7 children on Saturday the 21st of March firefighters in New York have been handing out pamphlets to the Orthodox Jewish community on how to combat fires and still observe religious holidays. The document is available online: here.

Children at Risk from Everyday Products – Coalition Petitions Government to Act

A coalition of firefighters, pediatricians and consumer groups have petitioned the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)to ban certain household products if they contain any member of the toxic class of organohalogen flame retardants. These chemicals are associated with cancer, infertility, reduced IW, learning deficits and hormone disruption and have in studies been found at higher levels in children than in their parents.

Protecting Children in Your Home

With people still talking about the Nationwide Make Safe Happen Super Bowl ad that brought dramatic attention to the number one cause of childhood deaths, preventable injuries, new research released today by Safe Kids Worldwide reveals the scope of the problem in a place most parents assume is safe: the home. Every day, six children die from an injury in the home, and 10,000 go to the emergency department for the kinds of injuries that commonly happen in homes. “Report to the Nation: Protecting Children in Your Home,” a report made possible by funding from Nationwide, is based on a survey of 1,010 parents across America. It explores what parents are concerned about and what they do ̶ or don’t do ̶ to keep kids safe in the home.
We also developed a more in-depth public policy report.

Standard for Child Carriers

The CPSC approved a new, mandatory standard for frame child carriers. The frame carriers are worn on the back of the caregiver. This type of carrier is often used for hiking and closely resembles hiking/mountaineering backpacks. Various hazards have been associated with these products including sharp points, small parts, lead paint, fire hazards and others.

FDA Funding Request for Implementation of Food Safety Programs

Increased funding for the Food and Drug Administration was amongst the key topics of discussion March 4th during a House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee hearing. Outgoing FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg expressed the importance of the funding and that the money is necessary for implementing the Food Safety Modernization Act. The FDA is undergoing efforts to modernize its regulatory systems and workforce to meet growing public health challenges. The funding would go to inspector training, technical assistance, working with states and raising the level of oversight overseas. This year the FDA is in the process of finalizing the implementing rules that govern FSMA’s scope and impact. This money would go towards getting FSMA up and running to secure the food supply of America.

 

Feeding Kids Peanuts Early Can Lower Peanut Allergies Later On

Peanut allergy develops early in life, is rarely outgrown, and is the leading cause of death due to food allergy in the United States. The National Institute of Health now recognizes research that would lower the chance of a child developing a peanut allergy. Researchers found that infants who regularly consumed peanut- containing foods from infancy to age 5 were less likely to become allergic to peanuts later in life. The study followed more than 600 infants and found an 81% reduction in peanut allergy in children who regularly at peanut products beginning in infancy. Doctors still urge parents of young children with prior allergies to consult a pediatrician before feeding them peanut products.

February 2015

Protecting Children in Your Home

With people still talking about the Nationwide Make Safe Happen Super Bowl ad that brought dramatic attention to the number one cause of childhood deaths, preventable injuries, new research released today by Safe Kids Worldwide reveals the scope of the problem in a place most parents assume is safe: the home. Every day, six children die from an injury in the home, and 10,000 go to the emergency department for the kinds of injuries that commonly happen in homes. "Report to the Nation: Protecting Children in Your Home," a report made possible by funding from Nationwide, is based on a survey of 1,010 parents across America. It explores what parents are concerned about and what they do or don't do to keep kids safe in the home.

We also developed a more in-depth public policy report.

Standard for Child Carriers

The CPSC approved a new, mandatory standard for frame child carriers.The frame carriers are worn on the back of the caregiver. This type of carrier is often used for hiking and closely resembles hiking/mountaineering backpacks. Various hazards have been associated with these products including sharp points, small parts, lead paint, fire hazards and others.

In an effort to strengthen the nation’s oversight of food safety, enator Richard Durbin (D-IL) and Representative Rosa DeLauro (N-CT) recently introduced the Safe Food Act of 2015. It would create a new, centralized Food Safety Administration that would assume overall responsibility for ensuring the American food supply is safe. President Obama also supports the idea to create such an agency.

TV and Furniture Safety

CPSC and Safe Kids continue to urge families to make their homes safer by properly securing TVs and furniture.

Storm Warning: on Carbon Monoxide (CO)

The dangers of carbon monoxide spike in the winter partly because families use gas operated generators for heat and power in and after storms. CPSC strongly urges families to be especially careful about the generators.

Fire and CO Recalls

You might notice that there are several recalls of products designed to help families prevent injury and death from fire and CO, a major killer of kids. They included Kidde fire extinguishers and System Sensor carbon monoxide detectors (combo with smoke alarm).

Are Manufacturers Getting the News Out?

Our safety ally, Chicago-based Kids in Danger, released its annual report on recalls which said that manufacturers rarely use social media to get the word out about their products which they voluntarily recall. Note that Kidde did tweet about its recall of fire extinguishers from @kiddesafety.

January 2015

Super Bowl Sunday also National TV Safety Day

With millions watching the big game last night, Safe Kids and the CPSC used the occasion to alert parents that the television they were watching could pose a significant risk if it is not properly anchored, attached or mounted. Safe Kids President and CEO wrote about it in her Huffington Post blog, and directs you to more safety tips.

Check out CPSC’s Game Plan for TV and Furniture safety in English and in Spanish.

A Storm Juno Warning

The weather forecasters may have overstated the enormity of Juno, but it’s an opportunity to remind those who lose power to be careful in using those gas generated generator which can poison your home with the “Silent Killer” carbon monoxide. CPSC provides 5 facts about the generators and the CO generators. Also, make sure to equip your home with CO detectors and that they are fully charged.

Swimming Safety Too

Brrrrrrrrr. And even in the cold weather that’s impacting many of us, CPSC is providing us with pool safety tips. It’s warm somewhere in the U.S.

CDC Unveils New Tool to Check Out How Your States on Highway Safety

How does you state rate on wearing seat belts to stay safe? Check out a new Centers for Disease Control tool. Washington State rates number one with a 97% grade.

Year in Review: 2014 Legislation Honor Roll

For the first time, we wanted to provide you with child safety laws passed in 2014 that may help kids stay safe. The document was designed as a research tool, a way to thank the bills’ heroes, and provide other states with ideas on child safety laws which they can pursue.

This is a partial listing; we searched for as many laws we could find but we believe there are more out there. If you know of a law which was passed in 2014 which will help kids live safer lives, please provide them to us (brief description, bill number, your state, link to bill, and original sponsors and their twitter handle.) by emailing our Director of Public Policy, Anthony Green at agreen@safekids.org. Check out the 2014 Legislation Honor Roll.

Countdown on Buckyball Refund: Last Day January 17

If you bought, received or own Buckyballs or Buckycubes, which were recalled because of the danger they pose to small kids, you have until Saturday, January 17 to request your refund. When small children swallowed a few of the small, high-powered magnets that make up this purported stress relieving product, they would reconnect in the digestive system causing severe injuries to the digestive system. The CPSC joined by Safe Kids and other child safety advocates sought the action from the Buckyball producer and seller. You can file your easy-to-use claim form by asking the administrator of the recalled products on this website (not a governmental agency) for the refund.

Year in Review: 2014 Legislation Honor Roll

For the first time, we wanted to provide you with child safety laws passed in 2014 that may help kids stay safe. The document was designed as a research tool, a way to thank the bills’ heroes, and provide other states with ideas on child safety laws which they can pursue.

This is a partial listing; we searched for as many laws we could find but we believe there are more out there. If you know of a law which was passed in 2014 which will help kids live safer lives, please provide them to us with a brief description, bill number, your state, link to bill, and original sponsors and their twitter handle by emailing our Director of Public Policy, Anthony Green at agreen@safekids.org. You can check out the 2014 Legislation Honor Roll here.

The Flu or Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?

With temperatures dropping across the country, the threat of carbon monoxide poisoning increases during the winter months when families are using gas fired generators and other products to keep them warm. Compounding the threat is that a person exposed to carbon monoxide could easily dismiss the initial symptoms as simply a case of the flu. Especially now, as this is primetime for the flu, it's important to be aware of the similarities and differences. This article shares the common symptoms and how to detect if you or a loved one has been exposed to the flu or carbon monoxide poisoning.

The FDA Declares Recalls from Undeclared Cumin

As you can see above, there are multiple recalls involving the presence of cumin in products and cumin itself because it contains the peanut allergen.

December 2014

2014 Most Dangerous Toys

Do you have any holiday toys you’re thinking about returning? On December 2014, MASSPRIG released its 29th annual ‘Trouble in Toyland’ report and lists the most dangerous and toxic toys released in 2014. In their findings, they address several hazards including dangerous metals, chemicals, choking hazards, dangerous batteries and magnets, and loud toys. This list may be helpful if there are toys that you are thinking about returning. You can take a look at the full report here.

Decrease in Traffic Deaths

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffics Safety Administration released the 2013 Fatality Analysis Reporting Systems (FARS) earlier this week and report shows a 3.1 percent decrease from the previous year of overall highway deaths. While the number of people killed in cars fell to the lowest number since at least 1975, the number of pedestrians killed didn’t fall as fast — and the number of bicyclists killed rose. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said road deaths have fallen by nearly 25 percent since 2004. The number of people injured in crashes also declined by 2.1 percent. See press release and report here.

Lead Paint Toys Reduced; Toy Diplomacy Applauded

In 2014, toy recalls were low, with 30 toy recalls one of which involved lead content. This compares to 172 toy recalls in fiscal year 2008, 19 of which were due to excessive lead content. Toy-related deaths involving children younger than 15 years old continue to decrease from 19 deaths in 2010, to 18 in 2011, 16 in 2012, and nine in 2013 (based on reports, to date). These good news findings came out of collaboration on toy safety among the three North American countries the U.S., Mexico and Canada.

Year in Review: 2014 Legislation Honor Roll

For the first time, we wanted to provide you with a list of all federal and state child safety laws that were successfully passed in 2014. We made great strides toward keeping kids safe in 2014, and hope for even more progress in 2015. This document was designed as a research tool, a way to thank the bills’ sponsor, and to provide other states with ideas on child safety laws which they can pursue.

This is a partial listing; we searched for as many laws we could find but we believe there are more out there. If you know of a law which was passed in 2014 which will help kids stay safe, please send us an email letting us know. You can email Director of Public Policy, Anthony Green at agreen@safekids.org. You can check out the 2014 Legislation Honor Roll here.

Recalled Items Resold

CPSC Chairman Elliot Kaye has urged Craigslist to stop people from selling recalled products, which are often dangerous, and can cause a risk to kids. Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, unveiled her annual “Safe Shopping Guide” to flag recalled products, while a local news station exposed unsafe products being resold on Craigslist. Take a look at those items in the following link: http://abc7chicago.com/news/recall-roulette-update-craigslist-takes-action-il-ag-warns-parents/409532/ It is illegal to sell recalled products. Celebrating

Holiday Safely

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), cooking is the leading cause of home fires. More home fire injuries and home cooking fires occur in November than any other month. Check out the following link on ways to have a safe and happy holiday. We want to share some holiday safety tips of our own and other allied organizations:

Safe Kids Holiday Safety Blog

CPSC: “Stand by Your Pan”

United States Fire Administration: “The Threat of Winter Fires is Real”

National Safety Council: “Avoid Toys With Small Parts That Can Be Pulled Or Broken Off”

Child Safety in Budget Deal

Congress set funding for federal agencies on its last day in session, December 12, 2014 which will last through the end of the fiscal year, September 30, 2015. It provided $5M more the Consumer Product Safety Commission compared to last year, and told the agency to continue its vigilance on product safety on child-oriented products. It provided $27M for food safety compared to last year’s funding. The bill provided $150M more to the National Institutes of Health compared to last year but that agency is still handicapped because of the “sequester” of funding. Finally, $42M in additional funds was provided to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention compared to last year. See the Senate analysis.

Ride-On Toys Drive Kids to Most Injuries

A report by the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio says that the category of toys leading to the most injuries are “ride-on” toys like scooters, wagons, tricycles. Battery operated “vehicles” for small kids like Barbie Jeeps can drive kids into trouble. The report is not advocating against their use, but rather their safe use.

November 2014

Help Pass Safe Sleep Bill

What a great holiday gift it would be if Congress passed a bill requiring federal action to reduce the number of infants dying for unexplained reasons and we can use your help. Because it really can happen. What's happening is that the House and Senate both passed bills to create a surveillance system to help us understand why infants are dying and a standard autopsy procedure, but because the bills are slightly different, the House needs to pass it again. You can go here for a one-page “AdvoAlert” on how you can make your voice heard to your Member of Congress. A tweet takes no more than 140 keystrokes and less than 60 seconds, and another 8 seconds to retweet that you did it to @skwadvocate.

Middle School Poster Challenge

The CPSC is running its annual poster contest to help warn all of us about the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning. Winners will help save lives and win prizes up to $1000. Here’s how to enter.

Recalled Items Resold

CPSC Chairman Elliot Kaye has urged Craigslist to stop people from selling recalled products, which are often dangerous, and often a risk to kids. Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, unveiled her annual “Safe Shopping Guide” to flag recalled products, while a local news station exposed unsafe products being resold on Craigslist. Take a look at these items. It is illegal to sell recalled products.

Celebrating Holiday Safely

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), cooking is the leading cause of home fires. More home fire injuries and home cooking fires occur in November than any other month. Check out the following link on ways to have a safe and happy holiday. We want to share some holiday safety tips of our own and other allied organizations:

Safe Kids: “Over the river, and through the wood . . . ”
CPSC: “Stand by Your Pan”
United States Fire Administration: “The threat of winter fires is real.”
National Safety Council: “avoid toys with small parts that can be pulled or broken off”

Ride-On Toys Drive Kids to Most Injuries

A report by the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio says that the category of toys leading to the most injuries are “ride-on” toys like scooters, wagons, tricycles. Battery operated “vehicles” for small kids like Barbie Jeeps can drive kids into trouble. The report is not advocating against their use, but rather their safe use.

Liquid Nicotine Fire Danger

We have told you about the risks to kids of liquid nicotine and E-Cigarettes as a poisoning hazard. Poison control centers, already strapped for resources, are being besieged by calls about poisoning from the synthetic nicotine products. It is also a fire danger. Because of the “e” in the name, people assume they are safe, but the United States Fire Administration examined fire incidents involving the product and the agency has real concerns.

Good Booster Seat News for Parents
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety issued a record number (27 of 41 rated) of booster seats with the highest rating, good news for parent consumers.

Carbon Monoxide
With the first blasts of cold air this season reaching some states, it’s never too late or early to prepare our homes for the winter months ahead. The dangers of carbon monoxide are particularly significant in winter because of the use of gas powered equipment such as generators. The Consumer Product Safety Commission provides extensive information about the CO risk in English and in Spanish.

New Hampshire has officially signed a proclamation designating November as Carbon Monoxide Awareness Month to warn families about the dangers of carbon monoxide levels in the home to highlight the importance of winter preparedness.

Laundry Detergent Pods
The Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Ohio has issued a report about the dangers of laundry pods which children can mistake for candy and swallow. Exposures to the colorful pods led to 769 children in the U.S. being hospitalized, some seriously. Poison control centers reported hearing from parents and caregivers about even more exposures.

Baby Wipes
In our last briefing, we reported about the voluntary recall of baby wipes by Nutek Disposables but wanted to make sure you were aware of it. The wipes sold under several names are contained in packages that contain bacteria. When you open up the package, there is an unusual odor and discoloration. The brand names are: Cuties, Diapers.com, Femtex, Fred's, Kidgets, Member's Mark, Simply Right, Sunny Smiles, Tender Touch and Well Beginnings.The notice from the Food and Drug Administration is here.

Call to Action on Safe Sleep
In Congress, the House passed a bill that will create a nationwide system to understand why infants die unexpectedly in cribs. Now, Safe Kids is working with others to pass the bill in the Senate before it adjourns in December. We encourage you to ask your Senators to pass S.2746. Here’s an easy-to-use tool to find your Senators’ phone numbers or email addresses. Remember to let us know that you reached out by tweeting @SKWAdvocate.

October 2014

Daylight Savings Time, Time to Change Batteries

With Daylight Savings Time ending November 2, it’s the perfect time of the year to think about the fire and carbon monoxide safety in your home. The Consumer Product Safety Commission has a great tip: when setting our clocks back to also check the batteries of our fire and carbon monoxide alarms.

Airbag Recall Alert

10.24.2014: NHTSA urges owners of certain BMW, Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru and Toyota vehicles to act immediately on recall notices to replace defective Takata airbags. Over seven million vehicles are involved in this recall and what appears to be a problem with the Takata airbags exposure to humidity. The recall involves vehicles sold from 2001 to 2008. 

There’s an App for Safety Too

Elliot Kaye, the new chair of the Consumer Products Safety Commission, announced awards to four developers of apps who responded to a challenge to create new tools to learn about recall and safety incidents involving consumer products. Check out the “Safety Checker,” “Recall Pro” and the best named winner, “Total Recall 101.” 

Advocacy Alert: Safe Sleep Bill Passes House

Legislation supported by Safe Kids to reduce crib deaths through surveillance and data collection systems, greater awareness and other measures passed the House. Safe Kids is now urging you to contact your Senators and urge them to cosponsor the Senate version, S.314.

October is National Window Covering Safety Month

The Window Covering Safety Council and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission are urging parents and caregivers during October to check their window covering for exposed or dangling cords that can pose a strangulation hazard to infants and young children.

Product Alert

There is an increase of teenagers who are getting sick from liquid nicotine in e-cigarettes.  There’s a report that 2,700 have called poison control centers, more than half of them children under six getting sick from e-cigarettes.

New Director for the CDC

We welcome Dr. Debra Houry as the new Director for the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. She comes from Emory University where she has done extensive work on injury prevention. Her emphasis is on research based solutions, a value that we hold dear at Safe Kids.

 

September 2014

Car Seat Checks

Last week was Child Passenger Safety Week, and thousands of parents attended events where certified child passenger safety technicians helped them make sure car and booster seats were installed correctly, but that was just the beginning. Parents and caregivers can find places to their child restraint systems through the Safe Kids website. It’s free and it’s important. NHTSA’s Parents Central can also help you find the closest check event or inspection station.

5 Developments that may Keep your Child Safer in Cars

Check out this article in Consumer Reports for 5 ways to make your children safer in cars by child passenger safety technician Jen Stockburger. Safe Kids released a research report, “Buckle Up: Booster Seats,”  for Child Passenger Safety Week and introduced a toolkit on a law to make child passenger safety seats exempt for state sales tax.

Register Your Kids’ Car Seats

Car seats for your kids are among the most important products a parent can buy in their lives, and making sure they are safe is vital. Safe Kids and NHTSA urge you to register your car seats so that you will be among the first to receive information about a recall. You can do so by sending back the manufacturer’s warranty card. NHTSA’s safercar.gov provides you with links to the major car seat manufacturer registration sites, some of which allow you to register on line.

When Is It Time to Graduate Kids in Car Seats?

Not sure when to move youre kid to a different car seat? Check out our easy to follow tips on when to move your kids from car seats to boosters to seat belts. Advocacy Alert: Safe Sleep Bill Passes House Legislation supported by Safe Kids to reduce crib deaths through surveillance and data collection systems, greater awareness and other measures passed the House. Safe Kids is now urging you to contact your Senators and urge them to cosponsor the Senate version, S.314.

Child Passenger Safety Week

As the U.S. marks National Child Passenger Safety Week, Safe Kids released a report which finds that a significant number of parents are allowing kids to use a seat belt alone before they are big enough. The report, funded in part by a $2 million grant from the General Motors Foundation is based on a national online survey of 1,000 parents of children ages 4 to 10.

Advocacy Alert: Safe Sleep Bill Passes House

Legislation supported by Safe Kids to reduce crib deaths through surveillance and data collection systems, greater awareness and other measures passed the House. Safe Kids is now urging you to contact your Senators and urge them to cosponsor the Senate version, S.314.

Register Your Kids' Car Seats

Car seats for your kids are among the most important products a parent can buy in their lives, and making sure they are safe is vital. Safe Kids and NHTSA urge you to register your car seats so that you will be among the first to receive information about a recall. You can do so by sending back the manufacturer's warranty card. NHTSA's safercar.gov provides you with links to the major car seat manufacturer registration sites, some of which allow you to register on line.

E-Cigarette Risk Watch

The World Health Organization and the American Health Organization joined others in urging health officials to place tighter restrictions on e-cigarettes. Further, state attorneys general in 29 states urged the Food and Drug Administration to regulate how e-cigarettes are marketed and sold on-line.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that the number of calls to poison centers involving e-cigarette liquids containing nicotine rose from one per month in September 2010 to 215 per month in February 2014, more than half of which involved kids, an increase in calls not found involving conventional cigarettes during the same time period. And an even more recent CDC report says that a quarter-million young people have tried e-cigarettes but never smoked a cigarette.

August 2014

Register Your Kids’ Car Seats

Car seats for your kids are among the most important products a parent can buy in their lives, and making sure they are safe is vital. Safe Kids and NHTSA urge you to register your car seats so that you will be among the first to receive information about a recall. You can do so by sending back the manufacturer’s warranty card. NHTSA’s safercar.gov provides you with links to the major car seat manufacturer registration sites, some of which allow you to register on line. 

New Safe Kids Youth Sports Safety Research Report

Safe Kids has teamed up with Johnson & Johnson to release a new research report about the culture of youth sports. We spoke with more than 3,000 teens, parents, and coaches to learn how kids are getting injured and what behaviors lead to serious injuries. Our reseach found that an alarming number of athletes are hiding injuries to stay in the game, athletes sustain injuries as a result of dirty play, and parents are pressuring coaches to play injured athletes. Parents rely on coaches to a large degree to keep their kids safe.  Read more in our research report and see the infographic.

E-Cigarette Risk Watch

The World Health Organization and the American Health Organization joined others in urging health officials to place tighter restrictions on e-cigarettes. Further, state attorneys general in 29 states urged the Food and Drug Administration to regulate how e-cigarettes are marketed and sold on-line. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that the number of calls to poison centers involving e-cigarette liquids containing nicotine rose from one per month in September 2010 to 215 per month in February 2014, more than half of which involved kids, an increase in calls not found involving conventional cigarettes during the same time period. And, an even more recent CDC report says that a quarter-million young people have tried e-cigarettes but never smoked a cigarette. 

New Safe Kids Youth Sports Safety Research Report

Safe Kids has teamed up with Johnson & Johnson to release a new research report about the culture of youth sports. We spoke with more than 3,000 teens, parents, and coaches to learn how kids are getting injured and what behaviors lead to serious injuries. Our reseach found that an alarming number of athletes are hiding injuries to stay in the game, athletes sustain injuries as a result of dirty play, and parents are pressuring coaches to play injured athletes.Parents rely on coaches to a large degree to keep their kids safe. Read more in our research report and infographic.

Magnicube Recall to Refund

The CPSC and Star Networks USA, LLC are announcing a voluntary recall to refund for consumers of Magnicube Spheres and Magnicube Cubes. This action is the result of a settlement of a 2012 administrative case, in which the CPSC alleged that Magnicubes are hazardous and should undergo a mandatory recall. From 2009 to the present, the CPSC has received a number of reports of ingestion of the high-powered, rare earth magnets, with some cases requiring surgery for removal. These magnets are especially dangerous to children and teens, who may ingest more than one magnet, increasing the risk for internal damage. Approximately 22,000 sets of Magnicube Spheres and Magnicube Cubes have been sold. Star Networks will provide a full refund for full sets that are returned and partial refunds for partial sets. This is related to the recall and proceeding of Buckyballs.

July 2014

Warning: Recalled Resold Products Still in Marketplace

The CPSC and Best Buy are warning consumers that Best Buy and other liquidators have continued to sell or resell 10 products that were previously recalled in 2012 and 2013. The products include digital cameras, televisions, subwoofers, dishwashers, dehumidifiers, beverage carbonation systems, electric ranges, gas dryers, travel converters, and office chairs. These products may pose fire, burn, shock, expelled parts, falls, and/or skin irritation hazards to consumers. Units: About 200, with an unknown number of digital cameras.

Planning Ahead for Hurricane Season

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has reported a potential dip in hurricane activity this season. This possible reprieve, however, does not mean that emergency safety and preparation measures should be neglected. By preparing for the hurricane season by stocking up on and securely storing food, water, and emergency supplies, some dangers can be averted when a hurricane does occur. The FDA also urges the avoidance of floodwaters, which can carry many kinds of contaminants. If food or water supplies come in contact with floodwaters, they should be discarded. Read more tips on food storage, preparation techniques, and safety here.  Finally, hurricanes and similar natural disasters bring power outages, but it is important to use gas fired generators with special care.

Buckyball Refunds Now Available

Owners of Buckyballs and Buckycubes magnets can now receive refunds. A trust fund has been set up for the recalls and refunds, which will be monitored by the CPSC. The high-powered magnets pose a danger to children and teens if swallowed, sometimes requiring surgery for removal. Consumers can visit BuckyballsRecall.com to file a claim form. Refunds will amount to the full or partial purchase price, depending on the number of magnets returned. Read more here.

Water Safety this Summer

Summer memories are often filled with fun trips to the beach, pools, or lakes. While bodies of water offer a great way to cool off and relax, it’s important to remember basic water safety measures, especially when kids are around. By always actively supervising children by the water, using the Water Watcher Card strategy, teaching children how to swim, and learning how to perform CPR correctly, everyone can help ensure that a summer spent around water will be a safe one. Read more tips on our blog.

Safe Summer Biking
With more and more people riding bikes for fun, fitness, and transportation purposes, NHTSA has released tips for safe summer biking. According to a recent NHTSA report, 48% of bicycling fatalities occurred between 4pm and midnight, with 68% of all fatalities occurred in urban areas. In order for everyone to ride safely, NHTSA recommends that bicyclists always wear a properly fitted helmet and easily visible clothing, obey all traffic laws, ride in a way that will be predictable to drivers, and always check one’s bicycle before heading out.

New Chair and 5th Member of CPSC

The U.S. Senate confirmed Elliot Kaye to be the new chair of the Consumer Product Safety Commission and Joseph Mohorovic to be its 5th member. It’s been awhile since the agency has had all five Commissioners in place. Chairman Kaye has been deeply involved in brain safety in youth sports and Mr. Mohorovic has experience as an elected state representative and in industry.

CPSC Urges Parents and Kids to Swim and ‘Pool Safely’

As summer kicks into high gear, the CPSC is reinforcing the importance of its ‘Pool Safely’ campaign. The CPSC reports that since Memorial Day this year, 72 children younger than 15 have drowned in swimming pools and spas, according to USA Swimming. Implementing basic safety precautions around pools and spas, teaching yourself and your children how to swim, and learning how to preform CPR could all be potentially lifesaving measures this summer. See more safety tips here.

Never Leave Your Child Behind

Safe Kids and NHTSA are working together again in the campaign to remind parents and caregivers never to leave a child alone in a car. Even with the windows open a few inches, the inside temperature of a car can reach deadly levels in just a few minutes. By always looking in the front and back seats before leaving your car, reminding children that cars are not play areas,  and immediately calling 911 if you do see a child alone in a hot car, we can all work together to help keep kids safe this summer. Read more from NHTSA here.


Car Seats and Booster Seats Are Sales Tax Exempt in Florida

In addition to Florida passing the 49th booster seat law in the nation, starting July 1, 2014, child restraint systems, including car seats and booster seats, are exempt from sales tax in Florida. This tax break was signed into law by Florida Governor Rick Scott, which saves Florida families more $121 million in taxes. See more about the legislation and tax break here.

Safe Camping This Summer

Camping is not only an excellent opportunity to get away from it all and relax, it’s also a great experience to share with your family. As with any other trip, however, it’s important to plan ahead to make sure that everyone has a fun, but safe, time. Always remember to have a stocked first aid kit and plenty of water, plan for the weather, and remain vigilant about water safety. Read more camping tips from our blog.

June 2014

Dallas Bike Helmet Law

Since 1996, Dallas, Texas has had a law in place which requires every individual riding a bike to wear a helmet. However, more recently, in an effort to implement a new bike share program, Dallas is considering repealing this law either in full or just for adults. Safe Kids opposed this action because not only does wearing helmets save tax dollars in terms of health care costs, but ultimately and most importantly prevents injuries, including traumatic brain injury and concussions. In a compromise, the City Council amended the law to allow cyclists 17 and older to ride without helmets but still requires them for the younger cyclists, reports the Dallas Morning News.

NHTSA Encourages All Motorists to be ‘Tirewise’

With the kickoff of summer and summer road trips just around the corner, NHTSA is urging all consumers to pay attention to basic tire maintenance, including proper inflation, rotation, and tread, among others. Tire aging, buying, and recalls should also be monitored.  NHTSA hopes proper tire maintenance will be a priority of all this summer, as it not only extends the life and use of tires, but helps avoid accidents and crashes, keeping your family safe. See more here.

Safe Kids: Grill Safely This Summer

We all love a summer barbecue, but as with any other cooking appliance, it’s important to pay attention to safety. Simply by reading the instruction manual and following a few basic safety precautions, everyone can have a fun and safe summer of grilling. Check out our blog for more tips.

California Companies Ordered to Stop Importing and Selling Hazardous Children’s Products

Four companies and six individuals in California have been ordered by a federal judge to stop selling, importing, and distributing certain children’s products. These products have been found to contain illegal levels of lead and phthalates, which may cause health problems, and small parts, which may pose a choking hazard. CPSC, which has been involved in the testing and monitoring of these products, has released more information here.

Safe Summer Sports

If your kids are playing sports this summer it’s important to remember to keep basic sports safety in mind. Hydration will be especially important in the upcoming hot summer months. For more tips and information check out our sports safety page and read the latest article about sports safety from our President, Kate Carr. Have fun this summer and stay safe!

May 2014

Another Death Reported in a Nap Nanny Infant Recliner

In 2010, Nap Nanny infant recliners were recalled due to a suffocation risk. The recliners are no longer sold in stores, but because another death occurred, raising the total to 6 infant deaths, we join the safety community in raising continued alarm. Remember to dispose of this product from your home immediately and to stay away from them at yard sales, as hand-me-down gifts or on an online auction site.

CPSC Calls for All Children to Learn to Swim in 2014

New reports released this month from the CPSC reveals that nearly 400 pool and spa drownings occur each year in the United States that involve children younger than 15 years old, with more than 75 percent involving children younger than 5. To combat this, the CPSC has launched the Pool Safely Pledge. To learn more about important water safety news that occurred this month, check out the Safe Kids blog.

Kick off Summer Safely

We are all ready for summer fun to kick off, but be sure to keep our summer safety tips in mind to ensure that you have fun all summer long. Check out our blog to learn safety tips for grilling, boating, hiking, driving, and more. Stay safe and have fun!

Prepare for Hurricanes

83 million of us in the United States live in an area that could be affected by a hurricane. Taking a few minutes now to review what your family needs to do and know will help if you are ever faced with hurricane watches and warnings. Check out our blog to learn more. Hurricane season also raises concerns about the use of gas powered generators because they can cause CO, a significant risk to kids.

Florida Booster Seat Law

Florida's child passenger safety law is the weakest in the country. But Florida lawmakers are working to change that by passing a bill sponsored by Rep. Keith Perry (R-FL) and Sen. Anitere Flores (R-FL) that will require children to ride in a booster or car seat through age five. Check out the letter of support we sent to Gov. Scott, encouraging him to sign the bill.

Buckyball Recall Public Trust to be Established:

The voluntary recall of high-powered magnetic sets, or Buckyballs, was announced as part of the settlement of an administrative case filed by CPSC in July 2012, which sought a mandatory recall of Buckyballs and Buckycubes. The settlement called for Craig Zucker to fund a Recall Trust to provide a refund to consumers who own and return the sets. Although the refunds will be funded by Mr. Zucker, they are created and controlled by the CPSC. Safe kids supported the CPSC’s efforts to recall the product because of the danger to children. 

CPSC at Ports in 2013

CPSC just released their summary of port activity for FY2013. For all of FY2013, more than 12.5 million units of dangerous imports were stopped and prevented from reaching the hands of consumers. About 2.1 million of the units stopped were children’s products totaling about 2.1 million units, which included a toy bubble gun with small parts and children’s clothes with a lead count that exceeded the legal limit. To learn more click here.

April 2014

Gear up for National Bike Month!

Celebrate National Bike Month this May and remember all the great reasons to ride your bike. You can also take this month to talk to your kids about the importance of riding safely. Check out our blog for tips to keep bike riding safe and fun.

Department of Transportation Rolls Out the GROW AMERICA Act

DOT’s Secretary Foxx introduced the GROW AMERICA Act, or Generating Renewal, Opportunity, and Work with Accelerated Mobility, Efficiency, and Rebuilding of Infrastructure and Communities throughout America. The GROW AMERICA Act builds on the bipartisan MAP-21 law which made significant progress on safety and GROW AMERICA can move us further with refinements to make the law more effective in encouraging states to take greater steps toward safety, especially involving kids. Safe Kids, joined by more than 75 of its coalitions around the nation, had provided its wish list on how the new law can work to make kids safer which you can read here.

Never Leave A Child Alone in a Car

New survey results, based on 1,000 parents and caregivers who transport children age six and under, found that despite the dangers of leaving young children alone in hot cars, an alarming number of parents, particularly dads and those with children three years of age and under, say they have left their children alone in a parked car, according to a national online survey conducted by Public Opinion Strategies of Washington, D.C. Check out more of the results here

New Federal Safety Standard for Soft Infant and Toddler Carriers

The CPSC has approved a new federal mandatory standard intended to improve the safety of soft infant and toddler carriers. The new standard becomes effective in September and incorporates structure, fit and position issues, strap issues, stitching and seam issues, and infant fall issues.

National Window Safety Week

With the weather warming up across the country, families are opening up their windows and enjoying spring. The CPSC is reminding everyone to take steps to prevent strangulations and falls. You can also see our Safe Kids window safety tips here.

Heatstroke Awareness

Another reminder now that spring is here is keep vigilant about the danger of heatstroke- on average, every 10 days a child dies from heatstroke in a vehicle. Remember never leave your child alone in a car, not even for a minute. Also, make sure to keep your car locked when you’re not in it so kids don’t get in on their own. To learn more about how you can help prevent heat stroke tragedies click here.

March, 2014

Liquid Laundry Packets

CPSC has received about 1,230 reports of children unintentionally injuring themselves with packets, through swallowing or getting chemicals on their skin or in their eyes. Several companies that manufacture these laundry packets have agreed to make changes in order to improve safety. Some of these changes include opaque packaging, labels, and warnings.  

3 Poisoning Hazards You May Not Know Are In Your Home

Every year 90,000 children are seen in U.S. emergency departments for exposure to poisons, most of which are associated with commonly used products that are found in the home. Most parents know to keep medicine up and away and to lock up cleaning products. However, other poisoning hazards in your home include button batteries, laundry detergent pods, and carbon monoxide. Check out this report for safety tips around these lesser known hazards.

Brain Injury Awareness Month

This month was Brain Injury Awareness Month. Each year 2.4 million Americans sustain brain injuries including 475,000 children. Check out our Safe Kids Safety Tips to prevent brain injuries in kids.

President Obama Nominates Elliot Kaye to Chair CPSC

On March 27, President Obama nominated Eliot F. Kaye as chairman of the CPSC. Kaye is presently serving as the Commission’s Executive Director and has been active in the agency’s actions related to reducing head injuries. Safe Kids looks forward to working with Mr. Kaye.

Safe Kids Releases New Medicine Safety Research

Every 8 minutes, or 64,000 times each year, a young child goes to the emergency department for medicine poisoning. To understand what is happening in the home that is putting children at risk, Safe Kids conducted a research study that surveyed grandparents, ages 50+ who regularly take care of grandchildren, about their medication storage and dosing practices. See more here or check out CEO and President Kate Carr on Dianne Sawyer discussing the results.

CPSC Approves New Stroller and Carriage Safety Standards:

This month, the CPSC approved a new stroller and carriage safety standard that will make all carriages and strollers sold after September 10, 2015 safer. The new standard addresses hinge issues that have resulted in pinched, cut, or amputated fingers or arms; this issue had the highest injury rate of all hazards associated with strollers. In addition, the standard deals with issues with broken and detached wheels, parking brake failures, stability, restraint issues, and more.

March is Poison Prevention Month:

March is Poison Prevention Month so take a few minutes to learn more about how you can prevent a poisoning accident in your home here. Half of the 2.4 million calls to Poison Help Number in 2010 involved children ages 5 and under. In fact, 9 out of 10 poisonings occur at home.

Reminder to Change the Batteries in your Smoke or CO Alarm:

With March 9 as the start of Daylight Saving Time, remember to take the time to replace batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide alarms when turning clocks forward. The CPSC recommends that this should be an annual habit, because it just might save your life.

One More Way to Keep Kids Safe in Car Seats

The law requires child seat manufacturers to notify all registered owners by first class mail that their child restraint system is recalled. Let the law protect your by providing the manufacturer of your contact information. Here’s how.

February, 2014

CPSC Releases a Storage Chest Alert after 2 Deaths

As reported in January’s recalls, two Boston-area children tragically died while playing hide and seek in a chest. The children climbed into a Lane hope chest that latched shut automatically and there was no way to open the airtight chest from the inside. The CPSC and Lane Hope Furniture is urging families to check their homes to make sure they don’t have a chest that cannot open from the inside. Another storage product recall is reported above (add link to above). To see what Public Policy Director Anthony Green had to say about this tragedy click here

Graco Recall Documents Released

The National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) have released documents related to the Graco car seat recalls. Graco Children’s Products are currently recalling almost 4 million car seats due to a faulty seat buckle. 

Three Surprising Facts About Safe Sleep

Safe Kids joined with American Baby magazine in a survey of more than 4,500 mothers on safe sleep practices. While the moms told us that most know what the safe sleep best practices are, too many are disregarding them; check out our blog about the survey by Rennie Ferguson, our injury epidemiologist. 

Safe Kids Worldwide was invited to provide comments for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) 2014 – 2018 Strategic Plan at a public listening session. Safe Kids Public Policy Director, Anthony Green, saluted the agency for its track record on making cars, highways and communities safer for kids. He also encouraged NHTSA to create a culture of safety among pre-teens, continue to work with states on strengthening graduated driver's license laws and renew a commitment to enforce the use of child restraint systems every time and on every ride. Read the full statement.

Sharing Recall Problems

We learn by sharing. You can go here to report an incident you experienced in your family involving a recalled product. You can also write to us at safekidsrecalls@safekids.org.

CPSC Portable Generator Related Deaths Infographic 

The new CPSC infographic is a great tool to learn about the risks associated with portable generators and carbon monoxide deaths. It reminds us not to run portable generators inside the house, even if you keep the windows open. For more tips on cold weather safety, check out our “Hot Tips for Cold Weather” blog.

Bedside Sleeper Ruling from CPSC

The CPSC has publicized a new rule for the manufacturing of bedside sleepers affecting infants up to age 5 months. The ruling hopes to make bedside sleepers, which are used as a safer alternative to co-sleeping, safer. 

Further details on the Graco Recall

USA Today explains further details with the Graco child seat recall of 3.8 million seats this month. One key thing to note is that the issue is with the buckle and not with crash protection. The buckle is important because it can become stuck and becomes a problem when there is a need for an emergency quick escape from the car.

 

Check out our Product and Safety News!


Storage Furniture
Lane Home Furniture: 12 million

Coffee Makers
Keurig: 7.2 million

Macaroni & Cheese
Kraft: 6.5 million

Notebook Power Cords
HP: 6 million

Strollers
Graco: 5 million

Fire Extinguishers
Kidde: 4.6 million

Bean Bag Chairs
Ace Bayou: 3.8 million