JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - When it comes to toys, kids tend to like everything they see. But before you buy a present for your little one, ask yourself: "Is the toy safe?"
"What you don't want is you trying to do something nice for a child and have something terrible happen to that child,' said attorney Wayne Hogan.
This year, consumers are expected to spend 51 percent of their holiday budget online, which includes buying toys they haven't seen in person.
Hogan said before parents buy, they should remember "WATCH."
"There are certain 'WATCH' words... things they need to look out for," he said.
WATCH stands for "World Against Toys Causing Harm." It's a consumer group that has nominated 10 toys for its list of worst toys of 2017.
For example, the Nerf Crossbow made its list because it shoots. He said that's why it is considered a dangerous toy.
"If that hits a child in the eye, it can cause permanent damage," he said.
The WATCH report said its concerns are not exclusive to its ten-named toys, but rather the list serves as examples of what parents should avoid when shopping.
Hogan said when shopping, parents need to ask a series of questions before making a decision:
"Is it small? Will it strangle? Is it sharp? Does it shoot? Is it hard ?" Hogan said. "If people will just keep those things in mind, they have the potential to protect the child that they care about from being harmed."
The Toy Association has reviewed WATCH's list and disagreed, saying the report is more alarming than informational.
In a statement, the Toy Association said toys are tested for safety and WATCH's list is based on a misunderstanding, which they find "disturbing" and "frightening" to parents.
"By law, all toys sold in the United States must meet 100+ rigorous safety tests and standards and be certified compliant by a federally approved testing lab before being offered for sale. On the other hand, W.A.T.C.H. does not test the toys in its report to check their safety; their allegations appear to be based on their misrepresentation or misunderstanding of the mandatory toy standards. And in some cases, they call certain items “toys” when they are not.
Unable to find product defects on the market as a result of these strict U.S. toy standards and test requirements, W.A.T.C.H. tends to focus on products with safety instructions and warnings, as if responsibly providing safety information to consumers is somehow an indication that a product cannot be safe for use or for sale, when the opposite is true.
Each year, we find these lists by W.A.T.C.H. to be needlessly frightening to parents; each year these allegations do not stand up to scrutiny when reviewed by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission..."
This is WATCH nominees for the 10 Worst Toys of 2017:
1. Itty bittys baby plush stacking toy by Hallmark
The Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a recall on the product on Aug. 31 because of the small fabric hats and bows that were detachable and posed a choking hazard. But WATCH said they purchased the toy online after the recall was announced.
2. Pull Along Pony by Tolo Toys Limited
WATCH said the product violates a federal law that requires that strings on playpen and crib toys be less than 12 inches long. The toy’s cord is 19-inches long.
3. Wonder Woman Battle-Action Sword by Mattel
WATCH said the stiff plastic sword can cause facial damage or other injuries to children.
4. Hand Fidgetz Spinners by Kipp Brothers
WATCH said many come with small parts that can easily become loose or pulled off.
5. Spider-Man Spider-Drone Official Movie Edition by Marvel and Skyrocket Toys
The drone comes with rapidly moving blades to help propel it into the air. WATCH said therein lies the danger.
6. Nerf Zombie Strike Dreadbolt Crossbow by Hasbro and Nerf.com.
WATCH said the crossbow is inappropriate for small children.
7. Slackers Slackline Classic Kit by Brand 44.
WATCH said the outdoor tightrope is “strangulation hazard, especially with children.”
8. The Oval Xylophone by Plan Toys Inc. and Plan Creations
WATCH said that the toy does not come with a warning regarding the 9-and-a-half-inch-long stick, which could be placed in the child’s mouth and obstruct the child’s airway.
9. Jetts Heel Wheels by Razor USA
The mini-roller skate-like devices come with sparklers on the back that spark while moving. WATCH said they can burn a child.
10. Brianna Babydoll by Melissa & Doug.
The dolls target children as young as 18 months, but with its removable clothes and ponytail holders, WATCH said it could become a choking hazard.
For more information on toy safety by the Toy Association, click here.