Tell Your Kids: Do NOT Chew on Toy Darts

toy darts

Two boys choked on the small, squishy plastic darts in this toy after putting the darts in their mouths.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Family Dollar Stores are announcing the recall of 1.8 million toy dart gun sets.

Two boys, a 9 year old and a 10 year old choked on the plastic toy darts after placing them in their mouths. The darts were inhaled and got stuck in the children’s throats. Both of these boys were playing with a friend and that friend’s toy with adults nearby. The darts weren’t shot into a mouth, as some might expect. They were chewed and swallowed. The suction cups caused the darts to get stuck.

This is the second toy dart gun set recall since December, when OKK trading recalled its “Action Team” Toy Dart Gun Set. An 8-year-old boy died from a dart in that toy. The boy reportedly was chewing on the toy dart when he inadvertently swallowed it and it became lodged in his throat, blocking his ability to breathe.

As parents, we all know to tell babies and toddlers to take things out of their mouths. CPSC tests products designed for children 3 and younger for small parts.

The same mouthing talk applies to older children, who, like younger ones, need to be reminded not to put toys in their mouths. In these instances, the darts are small, soft and flexible. Some kids simply find it satisfying to chew on the toys. Some likely do so without much thought.

These squishy toys with suction cups are just the right size to fully lodge in the throat, blocking it up like a drain plug. Once one of these darts gets stuck in the throat, it is extremely difficult for a doctor to remove.

Bottom line: Tell your elementary school-aged children not to mouth or chew on darts that fit fully into their mouths. The darts can stick in their throats, blocking their breathing.

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