If you ask parents whether they want their kids to play with safe toys, the obvious answer is yes. However, if you ask them how they know the toys are safe, the answer may not come as quickly. This article is intended to bring to light the U.S. toy safety requirements and refer you to additional resources to learn more.
LAWS TO ENSURE TOY SAFETY
Over the past 10 years, multiple laws have taken effect in the United States to protect children from dangerous manufacturing practices, but one in particular is worthy of note.
Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act
This act was enacted in August of 2008 and mandated that toys containing more than 600 million parts per million total amount of lead were not to be sold. Those products that were manufactured before or on February 10, 2009, will not be allowed to sell if they possess more than 0.1% of specific phthalates and if they're unable to meet the standards of the manufacturing process of toys. This limit of 600 parts per million in substrates was later reduced in 2009 to 300 parts per million in substrates and 90 parts per million in surface coatings.
The act mandates all manufacturers producing the products domestically to certify the children’s products be made according to the standards of safety prescribed by the government and the lead ban. It strictly prohibits sellers of used children’s toys like thrift shops and secondhand stores to certify the toys that are sold according to the new standards. Exposure to lead is obviously very bad, especially in young children and this law was passed to help protect kids.
MARBLE RUN SAFETY
It's essential to monitor young children at all times when they play with marbles. Children age 3 and below are especially prone to putting things in their mouths, which is why a choking hazard warning is included on anything with marbles. Storing marbles safely away from young children is very important.
In addition to the choking hazards that come from marbles, there are other safety considerations to keep in mind. Some marble run sets have lots of small parts that can easily break off and become a choking hazard, such as the orange pieces in the picture below.
OUR SAFETY STANDARDS AT MARBLE GENIUS
At Marble Genius, we take child safety very seriously and make sure our marble runs fully comply with the current laws. We leverage certified testing laboratories that do this for us.
Before you buy any toy, make sure to look for the label stating that it complies with ASTM 963 standards. Also, if you have any concerns about whether a particular toy complies, ask the company for their Child Product Safety Certificate that demonstrates the appropriate testing has been completed by certified laboratories. Here's a link to our Children's Product Certificate.
Toys are a gateway to fun, but first and foremost, we as parents need to ensure they're safe for our kids. Thankfully the U.S. has established laws to ensure children's safety, but due diligence by parents is just as important as ever.
For more information on the Consumer Protection Safety Improvement Act, feel free to visit these links: