On February 22, 2014, the company Infantino recalled their “Squeeze and Teeth Monkey” after several reports of infants choking. The toy is small, about 4 ½”, and is an orange monkey that squeaks. The part of the toy that is making infants gag is the tail of the monkey. These toys are exclusively sold at the large box-store, Target, though Target has issued no official statement or recall. The recalled toy has been selling at Target for approximately two years.
Inside the toy, on the back left leg, there is a serial number. The serial number for the recalled toys is: 206-647. Approximately 200,000 of these toys with the recalled serial number have been sold. Infantino has a similar toy, with the serial number 206-949 that has not been affected by this recall.
Infantino states that anyone who bought and is using this toy should stop immediately and call the company to set up a replacement toy. This toy is marketed for newborn babies and up. No serious injuries have been reported.
Here is a picture of the recalled toy:
In our last class we discussed visual representation of risks and crisis. Regina Lundgren’s book, Risk Communication: A Handbook for Communicating Environmental, Safety, and Health Risks, states that visual representation should be for specific audiences and uses. Lundgren says: “you will need to identify three things: what people want to know, what they need to know to make an informed decision, and how the visual information will be used.”
In the case of this article, the target audience is parents who have purchase the toy. The people want to know what toy is affected. They need to know why and how it is bad, and how it can pose a risk to their child. The visual information is used as confirmation that the toy they bought is the one being recalled.
On Infantino’s official recall of the monkey, they only include one picture (the one I’ve included above). Though this may be sufficient in some cases, Infantino has stated in their recall that there is a similar product that is not being recalled. This raises many questions: How similar are the two toys? What does the toy that is safe look like? Which one do I have? Infantino could have answered these questions by posting photograph of the other product in a side-by-side comparison.
Lundgren, Regina E., and Andrea H. McMakin. Risk Communication: A Handbook for Communicating Environmental, Safety, and Health Risks. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, 2013. Print.