New EU Child Safety Rules Govern Balloons and Whistles

By:  Brian Koenig
10/12/2011
       
New EU Child Safety Rules Govern Balloons and Whistles

Under a new European Union (EU) edict on toy safety, unsupervised children below the age of eight will no longer be permitted to blow up balloons due to choking hazards, according to Britain’s Daily Telegraph. Balloons and other toys — including magnetic fishing games, toy lipsticks, and recorders — have been added to the expanding catalog of Euro Zone regulations that are further empowering the region’s nanny state government.

The directive’s official guidance reads: "For latex balloons there must be a warning that children under eight years must be supervised and broken balloons should be discarded." Further, the EU’s legislation uplifts restrictions on the loudness of noisy toys, like rattles or musical instruments; likewise, all teddy bears marketed for children under three-years-old must be fully washable, as to prevent spreading of diseases and infections. Critics note that such regulatory authority means the popular "Lots O’ Hugging Bear" will be facing a ban if it does not undergo strict and costly new guidelines.

Despite their decades of entertainment, party toys such as small whistles and magnetic fishing games will be regulated, and possibly banned, because of small parts or dangerous chemicals that are allegedly hazardous to children’s health. Indeed, the popular "paper tongue" whistle blowers, commonly used at birthday parties, are now "unsafe" for all children under the age of 14, due to the possibility of a child swallowing and choking on pieces of the whistle.

Under a new European Union (EU) edict on toy safety, unsupervised children below the age of eight will no longer be permitted to blow up balloons due to choking hazards, according to Britain’s Daily Telegraph. Balloons and other toys — including magnetic fishing games, toy lipsticks, and recorders — have been added to the expanding catalog of Euro Zone regulations that are further empowering the region’s nanny state government.

The directive’s official guidance reads: "For latex balloons there must be a warning that children under eight years must be supervised and broken balloons should be discarded." Further, the EU’s legislation uplifts restrictions on the loudness of noisy toys, like rattles or musical instruments; likewise, all teddy bears marketed for children under three-years-old must be fully washable, as to prevent spreading of diseases and infections. Critics note that such regulatory authority means the popular "Lots O’ Hugging Bear" will be facing a ban if it does not undergo strict and costly new guidelines.

Despite their decades of entertainment, party toys such as small whistles and magnetic fishing games will be regulated, and possibly banned, because of small parts or dangerous chemicals that are allegedly hazardous to children’s health. Indeed, the popular "paper tongue" whistle blowers, commonly used at birthday parties, are now "unsafe" for all children under the age of 14, due to the possibility of a child swallowing and choking on pieces of the whistle.

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