Before you place that big red bow on a new scooter this holiday season, you may want to take note of the rising number of toy-related injuries over the last several years. A new study suggests that toy-related injuries that send kids to the emergency room are up by a whopping 60 percent over the last two decades, thought to be in big part due to the popularity of ride-on scooters.
CNN reports about the Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Ohio’s study that looked at data from ER visits of kids hurt while playing with toys. Dr. Gary Smith explains how he was been shocked to see the rise in ER visits with some 3.3 million children visiting the ER from toy-related injuries between the years 1990 – 2011. Dr. Smith says, “I’ve never seen anything like it in my career as a pediatric emergency room physician.”
Children who were in the younger than 3 age group were more likely to visit the hospital for choking on small toy parts. But for the over 3 and more active group of kids, 40 percent of them came into the ER after falling off a moving toy like a scooter or tricyle. Boys were more likely than girls to suffer injuries like broken bones and head injuries by about 63 percent.
The popularity of ride-on scooters has dramatically increased over the last several years with many kids mastering the art of flying around their parks and neighborhoods on the ride-on toys. Unfortunately, not enough of these kids are wearing helmets and protecting themselves from injury. Dr. Smith points out that after the faster more flexible scooters hit the market in 2000, the rate of injury began to rise. He says, “For the next two years the rate of scooter injuries spiked, dropped slightly until about 2005 and have been on the rise ever since.” He advises parents and kids, “Wear a helmet, wear a helmet, wear a helmet.” Dr. Smith also points out that scooter manufacturers need to focus on making the ride-on-toy as safe as possible, improving the design and standards.
Do your kids ride scooters?
What type of safety precautions have you implemented to make sure your kids are safe riders?