It’s yard sale season and lots of people love getting bargains. As the saying goes, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” But before forking over the cash, parents or anyone living in a household with children should stop, inspect and think before buying.
Why? Old products that were once considered safe may have since been found to be hazardous. These old items often find their way into resale shops and garage or yard sales. If purchased, the items go back into homes where their use could turn to tragedy.
You can do your part by going to the federal government’s product recall website — www.recalls.gov. Browse for any products before using anything you have already purchased.
Here is a partial list of items that could be dangerous to children, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission:
If made before CPSC and industry safety standards were established, these cribs can entrap, strangle or suffocate children. More than 2 3/8 inches between the crib slats or cutouts on the headboards or footboards present suffocation and strangulation hazards. Cribs that have broken or missing parts or corner posts higher than 1/16 inch present a risk of death.
There are about 20 deaths a year from using older and used crib models. If you’re throwing an old crib out, destroy it. Use only cribs that meet current standards.
Play yards and playpens
Faulty top and side rails on playpens, portable cribs and play yards with mesh sides can strangle young children. More than 1,000 children under the age of 5 are treated in emergency rooms each year from injuries in play yards. Five die.
Infant car seats/carriers
When used as a carrier, old car seats can eject infants because the handles break or side locks break.
Old baby walkers
Older walkers can fit through standard doorways and do not stop at the top of the stairs. In the past, baby walkers injured more children than any other product. These injuries included skull fractures, concussions, internal injuries, broken bones, cuts and bruises.
Clothing with strings
Jackets and sweatshirts with strings, especially around the neck, can catch and strangle children. Remove all strings or cut them off clothing. Do not sell old clothes that have these strings.