young toddler walking on a grass field with his teddy bear

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September 15, 2010

Popular restaurant chain Chuck E Cheese's recalled about 1.1 million Light-up Rings and 120,000 Star Glasses on Wednesday. The promotional toys had faulty battery fixtures that can hurt children.

The venue, which is focused on games and entertainment for kids, was giving away the toys. If crushed or pulled apart, the plastic casing on the battery-operated rings and glasses, can break into small pieces, possibly exposing the batteries and posing an ingestion hazard.

There have been two reported instances with the Light-up Rings, including one where a child swallowed the battery, report Reuters.

Customers who got these toys are to return them to the restaurant chain immediately. The toys can be exchanged for cash, Chuck E Cheese's coupons, or other promotional items.

Toys can be dangerous to kids, and some are much more prone to being hazardous to little ones. Learn to protect your kids with these toy safety tips:
  • Always read labels to make sure a toy is appropriate for a child's age. Guidelines published by the CPSC and other groups can help you make those buying decisions.
  • For Infants, Toddlers, and Preschoolers: Look for toys that are sturdy enough to withstand pulling and twisting. Make sure that eyes, noses, buttons, and other parts that could break off are securely attached. Make sure squeeze toys, rattles, and teethers are large enough that they won't become lodged in a child's mouth or throat, even if squeezed into a smaller compressed shape. Avoid toys with cords or long strings, which could present strangulation hazards to young kids.
  • Teach kids to put toys away.
  • Check toys regularly to make sure that they aren't broken or unusable: Wooden toys shouldn't have splinters or spikes and outdoor toys shouldn't have rust, stuffed toys shouldn't have broken seams or exposed removable parts.
  • Throw away broken toys or repair them right away.
  • Store outdoor toys when they're not in use so that they are not exposed to rain or snow.
  • Be sure to keep toys clean. Some plastic toys can be cleaned in the dishwasher, but read the manufacturer's directions first.
  • Steer clear of older toys, even hand-me-downs from friends and family. Those toys might have sentimental value and are certainly cost-effective, but they may not meet current safety standards and may be so worn from play that they can break and become hazardous.

For more information on toy safety, go to KidsHealth.org or visit the Consumer Product Safety Commision.
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