News Releases

News Releases

Holiday Toy Safety: DHEC Provides Tips to Help Keep Your Children Safe this Holiday

Dec. 23, 2019

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The holiday season brings the promise of new toys to children all over South Carolina, and the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) reminds parents that paying attention to toy safety is always in season.

“Toys are supposed to bring joy and delight during the gift-giving season, and DHEC wants to make sure little ones stay safe,” said Emma Kennedy MPH, Director of the Division of Injury and Substance Abuse Prevention.

According to the 2018 Consumer Product Safety Commission Report, there was an estimated 226,100 toy-related injuries treated in emergency room across the US in 2018. Of those, 70% occurred to children 12 years of age or younger; and 37% happened to children younger than 5 years of age.

DHEC wants parents to choose holiday toys with care. Check out our top five toy safety tips to keep your children safe this holiday season.

5 Toy Safety Tips

Supervision is essential. Provide safe, hazard-free play environments both indoors and outdoors. Toys get used and abused by children - regularly conduct a toy maintenance check for safety and durability.

Always pay close attention to the age recommendations on toys and choose one according to a child's age, interest, and skill level. Also, be aware of other safety labels such as "Flame retardant/flame resistant" or "Washable/Hygienic materials" on dolls and other stuffed toys.

Discard the plastic wrappings from toys immediately. They can potentially become deadly playthings to small children.

Don't give young children any toys with small parts, such as removable eyes, noses, etc. These are choking hazards.

Inspect all toys for sharp points or edges made from such materials as metal or glass. These toys should not be given to children under 8 years of age. This includes stuffed animals with wires that could stab, cut, or shock if exposed.

For more tips to protect your children, visit DHEC’s Prevent Injuries web page.


Download Christmas PSAs for broadcast or digital use:

Christmas Toy Safety Tips - (MP4)

Christmas Toy Safety without music – (MP4)


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