Prepared in association with the 'Good Toy Guide' - see below for details
Argos ensures that all the toys we sell comply with the appropriate toy safety standards. We have a team specialising in toys - from buying through to quality assurance, who work with our manufacturing & supply base to make sure that not only are the safety requirements met, but also that the toys we sell are suitable for the age and development needs of your child.
The following are hints and tips to make your child's play time safe, secure and above all, great fun:
The Lion Mark is a symbol of safety and quality, backed by a Code of Practice and developed by the British Toy & Hobby Association (BTHA) in 1988. It is used only by members of this association.
Toys bearing the Lion Mark have been made to the highest standards currently in force in Britain and the European Community (BS 5665/BS EN 71). It is a symbol of toy safety and quality for the consumer. Suppliers of toys who are members of the BTHA will include this mark on their toys sold by Argos.
When buying toys, always buy with the child's age in mind and ensure that the product is suitable for this age. Little children can easily choke on small objects.
The under-3s are especially at risk because they put everything into their mouths to explore shape and texture. It is impossible to watch a child all the time and even if you think your child has understood your warnings, a small toy can prove tempting. A safety message such as 'not suitable for children under 36 months because of small parts' must be taken literally. Toys will be clearly marked if they are unsuitable for the under-3s. Look for a text panel, or the following symbol, which indicates that the toy is unsuitable as it may contain small parts that could cause a choking hazard.
Messages such as 'recommended for children aged three - four' or 'play age five - seven' are just a guideline. Age guidelines can help you choose if the toy will be fun for your child to play with and if it will prove stimulating. Remember, what he or she enjoys playing with at the moment - for example, if a 10-piece jigsaw is easy for your child to complete, try one with 20 or 25 pieces.
When you get the toy out of the box, check that it is sturdy and well made. It's especially important to look over toys for babies and toddlers to make sure there are no small pieces that come loose or seams that could come apart. Don't forget, as well, that if a toy is not strong enough to withstand play it will be a disappointment to an older child. Remember the packaging is not normally part of the toy and should be disposed of safely before the toy is given to your child to play with. Be aware of toy features that may be hazardous, e.g.:
Regularly check the condition of a toy once purchased and played with - and always discard toys if they become broken during play
Often a toy is well designed and safe but causes problems when it gets into the wrong hands. A building brick that is safe, interesting and educational for an older child can be lethal if a toddler chokes on it. Likewise, a toddler who can only sit up, won't cope with a trundle truck and will just keep falling off. Think about your children and what they can manage before you buy a toy. Keep toys intended for older children out of the reach of younger children.
Some Toys contain small magnets. If more than one magnet is swallowed, they can connect to each other inside the body and, this can lead to tissue damage. We are required to show the following warning on all toys that contain small magnets:-
“Warning ! This toy contains magnets or magnetic components. Magnets sticking together or becoming attached to a metallic object inside the human body can cause serious or fatal injury. Seek immediate medical help if magnets are swallowed or inhaled.”
All products that Argos sells containing small magnets have this warning. There is no immediate risk to children playing with these toys in a normal or foreseeable way, but parents should take care if their child has a history of swallowing small parts, or mouthing their toys, and care should be taken if the child the toy is intended for has younger brothers and sisters.