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W.A.T.C.H. Lists 10 Worst Toys of 2016

dangerThe W.A.T.C.H. Organization (World Against Toys Causing Harm, Inc.) regularly monitors toys and their potentially hazardous conditions. They educate consumers about inferior products they could buy for their children, in turn quite possibly preventing toy-related accidents.

10 worst toys of 2016

The report attests, despite safety regulations, unsafe toys are still a problem. Poor manufacturing, inadequate design, and misleading marketing and advertising have led to serious injury – and worse – from a child playing with a toy.

The report urges parents to watch for signs that indicate a toy could be dangerous. This includes inadequate and inconsistent labeling. Research uncovered inappropriate age ranges and recommendations. W.A.T.C.H. believes manufacturers show no attempt to remove safety hazards that have been around for years. The report also looks at recalls and why there has to be a more exacting monitoring of the toy industry, as well as diligence by parents and caregivers.

What the report is seeing

Design & Manufacture – Poor quality toys continue to get into the hands of children, even after recalls. It is not unusual for parents to never hear about the recall of a toy already in their home. The industry continues to produce substandard merchandise through inappropriate practices and ineffective testing.

Warnings and Age Recommendations – W.A.T.C.H. says important information is regularly left off packaging. One of the items on the worst list is the “Kids Time Elephant.” It is a plush stuffed animal pillow and comes with no warning of possible suffocation with babies.

Awareness is critical, especially around this time of year when parents are looking for the best toy and manufacturers flood stores to meet demand without concern. Consumers cannot assume that a toy is safe simply because they recognize a brand name or the toy is of simple design. They should research toys, seeing what consumers are saying and if there are reports of defects, recalls or accidents involving the toy.

How product liability attorneys can help

Every three minutes, a child is brought into an emergency room for treatment of a toy-related injury. Between the four year period 2010-2014, over 60 children died because of a toy.

At Edelman, Krasin & Jaye PLLC, we want parents to take into account the repercussions buying a toy can have. We have seen first-hand what these incidences do to a family. We have also done whatever it takes to prove accountability, holding toy manufacturers responsible for their actions.

If your child suffered a toy-related injury, contact our product liability lawyers for a free case review.

Additional toy-related accident resources

E-Cigarette Ban in Checked Baggage Due to Fire Risk

close up portrait of a man smoking an e-cigarette

Airline passengers traveling in the U.S. will no longer be able to pack their e-cigarettes in checked baggage according to a rule now being finalized by government safety officials.

The ruling comes as a result of several reports of e-cigarettes catching fire in checked baggage. Passengers are also prohibited from charging their e-cigarettes while in the airline cabin, though they may travel with the devices in their carry-on luggage.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration (PHMSA) published the ruling in the Federal Register on May 18. U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said that it would go into effect after 30 days. The May announcement follows a preliminary ruling published in October of 2015.

More than 10% of adults in the U.S. use e-cigarettes, partly due to the reputation as a healthier alternative to traditional forms of cigarette smoking. However, there have been several reports of fires or explosions associated with the devices, some of them leaving the users or bystanders badly burned, or with broken bones or missing eyes.

E-Cig batteries and chargers can be faulty, dangerous

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has documented several e-cigarette-related explosions or fires in 2015, while the on-line resource E-Cig One claims to have documented 168 instances since FEMA’s initial report. Of the 168 explosions, 101 reportedly resulted in injury or even death.

E-Cigarette fires in passengers’ luggage have disrupted recent flights. A January Hawaiian airlines flight had to make an emergency landing due to reports of a fire from the cargo area that turned out to be an overheated e-cigarette. In March, a fire in a passenger’s carry-on bag on a Delta flight was extinguished while the airplane was still on the ground, but led to delays.

In some cases, user error may be the reason behind the fires and explosions. However, a significant problem with e-cigarettes is that their batteries and chargers have frequently been defective, leading to serous accidents and injuries. The industry is new and not well-regulated; flawed or substandard batteries and chargers have flooded the market.

Lawsuits filed over e-cigarette-related injuries

Consumers who have been injured due to e-cigarette fires or injuries may be eligible to file a lawsuit over defective e-cigarette products. Several parties who have been injured while “vaping” or in connection with using/charging the devices have already filed e-cigarette lawsuits against the manufacturers that produced faulty products at consumers’ expense.

Those injured may be able to gain compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, or other losses. A California woman who suffered serious burns when her e-cigarette charger exploded in her car was awarded $1.9 million by a jury in 2013.

If you believe that you have sustained injuries due to faulty e-cigarettes, batteries, or chargers, you are invited to contact the product liability attorneys at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye. You can set up a free consultation to learn more about your legal options by calling 1-800-469-7429.

Recent List of E-Cig Explosions Suggestions More Injuries

close up portrait of a man smoking an e-cigarette

Writers at on-line resource E-Cig One have compiled a comprehensive list of recent e-cigarette-related explosions, finding changes in the nature and severity of injuries reported in the past few years.  They note that the most frequently cited document concerning the issue, produced by FEMA in early 2015, is now out of date, as it does not take into consideration changes in the way that e-cigarettes are used since that time.

E-Cig One managed to track down 168 different incidences in e-cigarette explosions. While the FEMA document they cite states that approximately 80% of explosions take place during charging, the situation has changed with the popularization of sub-ohm vaping and models with removable batteries. And whereas most reported explosions from early 2015 and before did not involve injuries, the  majority of reports assembled in the recent compilation resulted in injury or even death.

Recent e-cig explosions more likely to result in injuries

The writers tabulated four different circumstances under which e-cig explosions occur:

  • During use (45 incidences)
  • During charging (73 incidences)
  • During transport, storage, or other unknown circumstances (28 incidences)
  • Involving spare batteries for removable battery mods (22 incidences)

67 explosions did not result in injury (though there may have been property damage); however, 101 incidences did result in injury or even death.  Several of the injuries involve burns, some severe enough to have required skin grafts. Victims in some cases lost an eye and/or several teeth. Others suffered broken bones.

E-cigarettes are a new product and their potential to cause harm is not yet well-understood. They are, as yet, unregulated and there is no clear data on the long-term impact of e-cigarettes, as compared to smoking standard cigarettes, for example.  Technical malfunctions resulting in explosions add to the concerns that some have raised about the products.

Technical problems with e-cigs may be to blame

There are many reasons why e-cigarettes have exploded in the past few years.  In some cases, the users themselves may be at least partly to blame if they have operated them incorrectly.  However, as the writers note, there are certainly cases where the manufacturers are partly or completely responsible for the explosions. “If an e-cigarette is sold with a USB adapter and no wall charger, for example, it hardly seems fair to blame the buyer if the battery explodes after being connected to a computer’s USB port. It does appear that some e-cigarette products suffer from poor quality control.”

In some cases, users who have been injured by these products may be able to recover some of their losses by filing an e-cigarette explosion lawsuit.  For instance, a woman in Queens, NY who suffered severe burns to her leg as the result of an e-cigarette battery explosion plans to file a lawsuit against the manufacturer of the battery, LG, according to her attorney.

If you have suffered injuries from a malfunctioning e-cigarette, the product liability attorneys at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye can review your legal options for seeking compensation. You can set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation by calling 1-800-469-7429.

Childrens’ Safety: 8 Things ER Doctors Keep out of Their Homes

dangerA home is supposed to be a safe haven, but far too many unintentional injuries occur under Americans’ own roofs each year — especially those involving people in aged 0 to 19 years. More than 225,000 children are hospitalized and 9,000 die annually from accidents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In total, nearly 9 million children visit the ER each year for injuries.

Adults need to take proper precaution to protect themselves and their children from accidents that can easily be prevented.

8 things ER doctors won’t have in their homes

Many seemingly innocent household items actually have a number of hidden dangers. Health.com interviewed ER doctors to find out what standard products they’ve banned from their own homes.

  1. Trampolines they’re fun to have in a backyard — until someone gets hurt. Many serious accidents happen on trampolines, resulting in serious damage, such as neck injuries, broken femurs and upper-body fractures.
  2. Button batteries. Often found in portable LED lights and car remotes, toddlers often mistake button batteries for candy and eat them. When ingested, they can get stuck in the esophagus and the battery acid can cause permanent damage.
  3. Power washers and extension ladders. Frequently used for home maintenance, people fall off ladders all the time and sustain very serious injuries, such as collapsed lungs and head trauma. Even seemingly harmless power washers can be very dangerous, as their forceful water stream can cause major injuries and lacerations.
  4. Swimming pools. Highly coveted by many families, backyard swimming pools can be extremely dangerous, because it’s far too easy for kids to fall into the pool and accidentally drown. These accidents often happen very quickly and quietly, making them hard to prevent.
  5. Guns. For reasons ranging from personal protection to hunting, many people keep guns in their homes, but fail to properly secure them. Consequently, these weapons fall into the hands of far too many teenagers and young children, which can quickly turn deadly.
  6. Ramen noodle soups. Popular for lunch or a snack, Ramen noodle cups get incredibly hot in the microwave and can actually cause serious burns when not handled with caution — especially when in the reach of young children.
  7. Leftover pain pills. After finishing an antibiotic, many people hold on to unused medication, just in case they need it again. This practice may seem savvy, but it can actually be deadly if the pills accidentally get into the hands of a child.
  8. Certain high chairs. Many parents purchase high chairs that saddle up to the table, so their child can take part in family meals. While a sweet gesture, placing high chairs next to the table can be quite dangerous, as it allows these young kids to kick the table and knock their chair to the ground, which can result in a skull fracture.

Stand up for your rights

Sometimes accidents happen, but if you or your child sustained an injury from a common household item in your own home or someone else’s, you may be entitled to legal compensation. If the item was dangerous or defective in nature, you may have grounds for filing a product recall lawsuit. Litigation can help recover compensation for various damages including past and future medical costs, lost wages, emotional trauma, lost earning capacity, among other types of damages.

The national product liability attorneys at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye are here to fight for your rights, every step of the way. Contact us at 1-800-469-7429 today to schedule a free case review to discuss your options.

Consumer Safety Group Warns of Holiday Decoration Injuries

older man next to christmas treeDecking the halls is surprisingly dangerous. According to the Consumer Safety Products Commission (CPSC), there were over 14,000 injuries – including 12 deaths – caused by holiday decorations in the last two months of last year.

Topping the list of injuries were falls and cuts, followed by back strain and ingestion of foreign objects. The CPSC warns consumers to take precautions this holiday season to avoid injury from decorations.

The greatest risks come from:

  • Sharp, heavy and delicate decorations – Lacerations led the list of injuries last year
  • Small foreign objects – Ingestion of foreign objects were a problem because many decorations include bits that look like candy or other food, as well as other small, removable parts
  • Fires – The reporting period had 10 deaths that were caused by fires. To cut down on fire risk: choose lights that are certified by a safety laboratory; inspect your lights for damage and discard any that are damaged; keep burning candles in stable places where they cannot ignite items; before buying a Christmas tree, make sure it is “fire resistant”; keep live Christmas trees away from heat sources and well-watered.
  • Falls – Over 1/3 of the holiday decorating injuries involved falls, and about half of those were falls from ladders; use caution when using ladders to hang lights or install other decorations.

Liability for defective holiday decorations

Each year, consumers flood the stores to buy decorations that pop up in temporary Christmas departments. However, these decorations may not meet the safety standards buyers would expect in permanent-use objects.

When someone is hurt while decorating and a defective or unreasonably unsafe product is to blame, he or she may be entitled to compensation from the manufacturer, distributor, or seller.

There are several ways for these parties to be held liable for the accident, including:

  • A defective design – The product is engineered in a way that will always result in a dangerous object even if it is assembled carefully.
  • Defective manufacturing – The product has a safe design but a flaw amounting to a safety risk was introduced as some stage of the production like assembly or packaging.
  • Failure to warn – The manufacturer has fallen short in providing consumers with instructions for proper operation or has failed to warn about risks inherent in the use of the product in its intended manner.

Compensation available to plaintiffs

Litigation may help plaintiffs secure damages to account for:

  • Medical expenses, both past and future
  • Lost wages
  • Reduced earning capacity
  • Physical and emotional pain and suffering
  • Funeral expenses
  • Wrongful death claims

These types of lawsuits can be brought in state or federal courts but each have their own rules and statutes of limitations. Injury victims should always consult with an experienced product liability lawyer to make sure all court requirements are met.

If you have suffered injury from a defective household product or holiday decoration, the personal injury attorneys of Edelman, Krasin & Jaye are here to help. New York area residents can contact us at 1-800-469-7429 to schedule a free case evaluation.

Holiday Shopping Alert: 10 Worst Toys That Pose Dangers to Children

The Long Island dangerous toy lawyers at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season. In that spirit, the team would like to bring some of the potentially dangerous toys to the attention of parents this year, so they can take the appropriate steps to keep their children safe from harm.

As the Christmas season draws near, consumer watchdog groups get busy as well. These organizations are responsible for releasing lists of potentially dangerous or defective toys parents would be wise to avoid during the holidays.

One of those groups, World Against Toys Causing Harm or W.A.T.C.H., recently posted their list of the “10 Worst Toys” on the organization’s website. These products are sold in a wide variety of venues and may be on your children’s Christmas lists this year.

Dangerous toys to avoid

Some of the toys, such as the “Savage Orc Battle Hammer” and “Radio Flyer Ziggle” have the potential for causing impact injuries, while the “Air Storm Firetek Bow” and “Catapencil” raise the risk for eye injuries. Others, such as the “Wooden Instruments,” “Lil’ Cutesies – Best Friend” and “Colored Hedgehog” may look harmless, but pose a serious choking hazard.

The “Bottle Rocket Party” is cited by W.A.T.C.H. for not including safety goggles in the packaging, while the “SWAT Electronic Machine Gun’s” authentic design could prove dangerous in the hands of some children. The bright colors and happy faces of the animals in the “Alphabet Zoo Rock & Stack Pull Toy” belie the strangulation dangers lurking in the attached 20-inch cord.

The W.A.T.C.H. list is not the only list of dangerous toys noted for the 2014 holiday season. Another organization, United States Public Interest Research Group or U.S. PIRG, also released its annual report, “Trouble in Toyland.” This year’s report warns parents to watch out for toxicity levels in some children’s toys, as well as choking hazards. Some toys were also reported to cause possible hearing loss due to their noise, while others contain small, powerful magnets that could result in serious injury if ingested.

Toy-related injuries

According to a recent report at CBS News, around 18 children suffer toy-related injuries every hour in the United States that are serious enough to send them to the emergency room. More than 80 percent of those injuries occurred in the child’s own home and the most likely culprit was a riding toy like a scooter. Common toy-related injuries include lacerations, suffocation, bone fractures, strangulation and burns.

Younger children were more likely to be harmed by choking or asphyxiation hazards, which can be hard to determine with some toys. Reading labels to ensure age appropriateness of a toy is one of the first steps parents can take to prevent choking accidents. Unfortunately, some toy manufacturers market their products to younger children, even when a choking danger might exist. This leaves parents and their children vulnerable to possible accidents once the toy comes home.

Consult with Long Island toy defect lawyers

When a child, or someone else, suffers an injury from an unsafe product, a product liability lawsuit might be the next logical step. Product liability puts the burden of proof on the plaintiff, who must show the product was defective due to the manufacturer’s negligence, the defect caused the injury and the injury required medical treatment. An experienced NY child injury attorney is usually needed to help families navigate this complex process to protect their rights and pursue legal compensation.

The product liability lawyers at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye understand the long-term implications of injuries caused by a dangerous toy. We work with victims and their families every day to hold toy manufacturers and retailers accountable for their actions. If your child is hurt by a defective product, don’t try to tackle the legal system alone.

Contact Edelman, Krasin & Jaye to learn more and get a free evaluation of your case. Call us today at 1-800-469-7429.

  1. W.A.T.C.H., 2014 “10 Worst Toy” List, http://toysafety.org/toy-safety/2014-10-worst-toy-list/
  2. CBS News, The Most Dangerous Types of Toys for Kids, http://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-most-dangerous-types-of-toys-for-kids/
  3. U.S. PIRG, Survey Finds Dangerous Toys on Store Shelves, http://www.uspirg.org/news/usf/survey-finds-dangerous-toys-store-shelves-0