Be Alert for Dangerous Products When Shopping for Children October 18, 2010.

Kids and dangerous products don’t mix. Be alert to the hazards in today’s consumer marketplace.

Generally speaking, most consumer products are tested in many ways prior to being put on the market. Whether or not the testing is as complete as we’d like to think is another question. And, while dangerous products constantly stalk the marketplace, there are none more disturbing that those items made for kids. One wonders how hard it is to "think like a child," and adapt toys or other product designs accordingly to be safer.

"Many of the product recalls for children’s items that we’ve witnessed over the past few years, weeks even, involve dangerous components or hazardous materials. Think small pieces detaching and choking a baby, sharp edges that shear fingers off, items with attractive cords posing a strangulation risk and toys with lead content so high it virtually sets off alarm bells," said Christopher Mellino of the Mellino Law Firm LLC, in Ohio. Just about any scary scenario is a reality these days. While millions of items are recalled every year because of safety concerns, it’s typical that a recall is not instituted until someone has been harmed.

Recalls that have been launched because a concern was caught shortly after product dispersal are dangerous for several reasons. There may have been no incidents reported yet, because the recall action was launched quickly. But even if the recall was initiated rapidly, there is always the chance that the product in question was purchased by someone who will not know or hear about any recalls.

There’s a lot to be said about doing things right the first time, before sending a product out for millions of consumers to buy. This concern is even more valid given the global marketplace of the 21st century, where many items are made in other countries for U.S. businesses, thus lacking the quality control of home.

Many consumers these days are label shopping, and who can blame them? With the number of unprecedented recalls of items, it’s frightening to think that our lives are at the mercy of someone who makes a product with a potentially fatal flaw. It’s even more worrisome that product manufacturers, in their haste to make money, don’t stop and check things twice before promoting their products.

"For those who have been in a situation where a product you thought was safe wasn’t and it harmed you or your family, bring your case to me for an initial assessment. I’ll be able to explain product liability law to you as we discuss the details of your case," Mellino said. "You may be eligible to obtain compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and, in extreme cases, the wrongful death of your child."