Most Dangerous Toys
On August 13, 2009, the Little Tikes Company recalled more than 1.5 million toy workshops and trucks after a young child got a plastic nail lodged in his throat, the Associated Press reports. The boy, from South Carolina, was hospitalized but survived. The recalled toys all have red or blue plastic toy nails that are roughly 3 1/4 inches long. Click through to see other dangerous toys through the decades.
This device landed on Radar Magazine's "Most Dangerous Toys" list. "This was the most elaborate Atomic Energy educational set ever produced, but it was only only available from 1951 to 1952," according to ORAU.org. The toy, which retailed for $49.50 (in today's dollars that's more than $300), contained actual uranium ore. It is now a highly prized collector's item.
These creepy crawlers could burn - big time! With this 60s toy, kids turned on the hot plate, waited for it to heat up and then poured "Plasti-Goop" into the molds to form creepy crawlers. Of course, a kid was suppossed to wait until the device had cooled off before they grabbed the newly formed bugs. "Burns and blisters were a fact of life in the plastic bug business, and you simply sprayed the injury with some Bactine and hid it from Mom," MentalFloss.com reports.
This toy from the 1960s, billed on its box as "the most amazing toy ever," resembled a finger and could shoot bullets and various other objects, as well as write like a pen. The Sixfinger, however, was not the safest toy in the box. MentalFloss.com claims "those little plastic bullets hurt like heck! (You think the average seven-year-old boy is going to pay attention to the package disclaimer that warned against aiming the Sixfinger at human targets?)"
This toy from the 60s is similar to a Hula Hoop - but more dangerous. You place this object on your head and then twirl your head really fast to keep it going. "The Swing Wing looks like it was developed by a secret cabal of chiropractors intent on raising incidents of neck trauma in children for the benefit of their own pocketbooks," ToyBender.com reports.
This toy cannon had some serious power. It could shoot toy cannons 35 feet into the air. It made Radar Magazine's "Most Dangerous Toys" list as the cannon balls seemed "perfectly sized to lodge into an eye socket, down an open mouth..." FreeRepublic.com reported.
Lawn Darts was a popular game in the 1980s. "A set of lawn darts usually includes four large darts and two targets. The darts typically are about 12 inches long with a heavy metal or weighted plastic tip on one end and three plastic fins on a rod at the other end. The darts are intended to be grasped by the rod and thrown underhand toward a target. While the tip may not be sharp enough to be obviously dangerous, these darts can cause skull punctures and other serious injuries," according to CPSC.gov. The organization reports that Lawn Darts were responsible for the deaths of three children.
Kids in the 90s loved these mini hammocks. Unfortunately, these hammocks killed kids. "Between 1984 and 1995, CPSC received reports of 12 children between the ages of five and 17 years old who became entangled and died when using net mini-hammocks without spreader bars. CPSC is also aware of an injury to a seven-year-old girl who suffered permanent brain damage from a near-strangulation in a mini-hammock," the Consumer Product Safety Commission concluded when they recalled the product in 1996.
Cabbage Patch Dolls
The loveable Cabbage Patch kid has been sold to millions of children around the world. However, the Cabbage Patch Snacktime Kids, which had battery-powered mechanical jaws, had some rough consequences as kids got their hair and fingers caught in the dolls mouth. In 1997, Mattel and the Consumer Product Safety Commission offered "a refund program for all dolls purchased since the toy's introduction in the fall of 1996," according to RecallWarnings.com.
This battery-powered car for kids was a lot of fun but it had one big problem - the foot pedals would get stuck in the "on" position, which could injure children and cause them to crash the car. "Fisher-Price has received nine reports of the foot pedal on these vehicles sticking. One 3-year-old boy suffered cuts and bruises when his motorcycle ride-ons ran into a home," according to ConsumerAffairs.com. Fisher-Price recalled 218,000 of these vehicles in 2000.
The pretty little Sky Dancer had a not-so-pretty side effect: the potential to "fly rapidly in unpredictable directions" and "hit and injure both adults and children," the Consumer Product Safety Commission conculded. To make the doll fly, kids inserted it into its launcher, pulled the pull-cord, and the Sky Dancer flew. The doll flew a little bit too unpredictably, and thus 8.9 million Sky Dancer dolls were recalled in 2002.