Kids who spin yo-yo waterballs around their heads can get them wrapped around their necks, leading to tales of temporary blindness, blackouts, and neck scars. Today New Jersey voted 71-to-7 to ban sales of the toy. [Newsday]


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  1. Next on the list, the TETHER BALL.

  2. jwissick says:

    I think the tether ball is already long gone.

  3. stevebmd says:

    Kids who spin yo-yo waterballs around their heads can get them wrapped around their necks…

    Yes, and kids who swallow their iPods can get an intestinal obstruction.

    What the hell???

  4. BigBoat says:

    So I dunno, I went to this site and they look kinda fun.

    Why do dumb kids with weak necks and under developed trachea have to ruin it for the rest of us?

  5. goodkitty says:

    Oh God… now I need to go back to spray paint and a plastic bag. They just don’t care about us kids anymore!

    About the tether ball… where would you play with one? There are no playgrounds, they’re all paved over with Wal-Marts. And you’re not allowed to run or touch anything at school, lest you hurt someone.

    Wasn’t New Jersey where those kids got killed jumping between a parking garage and some other building for fun? SEE WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU TAKE AWAY THE TETHER BALL? :)

  6. dreamcatcher2 says:


    ^ the toys in question… I’ve had toys like these growing up, and I certainly never got it wrapped around my neck.

  7. faust1200 says:

    We should cheer toys that promote natural selection, not shun them.

  8. Zodiack says:

    I see common sense is in as short a supply as ever.

  9. Maurs says:

    They think that’s bad? A water balloon yo-yo murdered my children and raped my wife. If I hadn’t been exercising my second amendment rights, I wouldn’t have gotten out of that Toys-R-Us alive.

  10. mrestko says:

    In other news:

    New Jersey preempts future toy accidents by banning fun.

  11. dantsea says:

    Well, goddamn. Every time Uncle Chuck comes up with a way to automate the job…

  12. trollkiller says:

    Why get rid of such an educational toy?

  13. coren says:

    Oh man, I love this growing trend. Quick, instead of letting evolution do it’s thing, let’s ban MORE STUFF!!

  14. LilKoko says:

    There’s already a law that addresses this problem. I think it’s under the heading “parental negligence.” “Somebody” thought that toy was appropriate for a 4-year-old!?

  15. Xkeeper says:

    I fail to see how a string around a neck can cause sores all over the face (the kind you’d get by, say, skidding along pavement for about ten feet). But whatever, let’s ban everything.

    I’d be more worried about them popping and lettng go of water everywhere. Or is that another reason? Causes slippery floors, which can lead to falling down stairs, death, etc etc etc.

  16. aka Cat says:

    Let’s just ban every activity that doesn’t involve sitting quietly in a chair.

  17. MonkeyMonk says:

    I read earlier in the week that there were some drownings over the summer. Somebody needs to look into putting a ban on swimming. Frankly, with all the threats out there I’m amazed that any children make it to 10 anymore. Somehow I made it and I was even given a set of JARTS when I was 8.

  18. Electroqueen says:

    @goodkitty: I think that was in Florida: []

    Hey if something is lethal to a .000000001% of the population why shouldn’t our local governments ban it so the .999999999% can live happy?
    Coming up, the ban on roasted peanuts. This popular American food is enjoyed by many people, but did you know it can cause death? Tonight at 11.

  19. @MonkeyMonk: I forget the figure, but I believe more children are killed with/by 5 gallon buckets than guns each year. I could be wrong. Add in pools and tubs, and I think they should pass legislation to not allow any standing water. So fill up your tubs, pool, lakes, streams, fish tanks, etc….

    How many adults die each year from doing stupid things? But it’s OK for that, but when kids do it, “Won’t someone think of the children!”

  20. alfista says:

    We bubble-wrapped our toddler. We realize that it isn’t mandatory by law yet, but we figure it will be soon and the price of bubble-wrap will skyrocket. We’re proactive that way.

  21. AlisonAshleigh says:

    So I’m going to hell for this, but I’m in a really bad mood today (have to work 630am-8pm) and I went to the website and could NOT STOP LAUGHING.
    Some of my favorites-

    “Summer 2003–Schiller Park, IL–During the summer of 2003 I purchased the yo-yo water balls for my three children from a local flea market. The balls were unpackaged and there were no warning labels on the product. About 10 minutes after arriving home, my 7 year old daughter alerted me that her sister, 6 year old Chynnah, was having trouble breathing. I then found my 8 year old daughter having difficulty breathing and pointing to her neck at which time I saw the cord of the yo-yo water ball wrapped around her neck tightly. I attempted to remove with my hands, but I was unable to loosen its grip. I retrieved a scissors and then cut off the cord. My daughter suffered bruising about the neck, not to mention how traumatized she was. I further learned that while she was playing with the yo-yo water ball she was spinning the ball above her head when the cord suddently wrapped around her neck.”


  22. AlisonAshleigh says:

    Ok Apparently only kids who have parents that give them ridiculous names have problems with this toy. Theres also a Casadei, (OKAY I’ll give you Cassidy, but Casadei?) and a Justice. My personal favorite story is this guy, who I expect will make the Darwin awards at some point.

    “August 2005–Albuquerque, NM–I’m a 34-year-old adult and quite safety-conscious, not the sort of person one would expect to be injured by a rubber toy popular among 5-year-olds.

    I was playing with a Water Yo-Yo belonging to a neighbor’s 13-year-old daughter over the summer, spinning it forcefully over my head. The rubber string suddenly snapped off right at the ball, sending the ball flying across the yard. The piece remaining in my hand recoiled so hard it bruised my cheek severely, knocked my glasses off, and knocked me to the ground. If I hadn’t been wearing my glasses, the end could easily have hit me in the eye hard enough to blind me. If my glasses were not of the impact-certified safety variety, they might have shattered and dealt me a serious eye injury. It felt like I’d been punched in the face. Hard.

    When I picked myself up and went to retrieve the ball end, I discovered my neighbor’s dog (admittedly not the smartest canine I’ve run across) in the process of trying to swallow it. The poor animal could easily have choked.

    A toy capable of causing serious injury to an adult and choking a pet should obviously not be in the hands of small children, and since that seems to be the primary market for these balls, they should certainly be banned.

    It occurs to me after reading the accounts on this site, that an adult could be strangled by the cord just as easily as a child. If the cord wrapped itself tightly enough, even a grown man like myself might not be able to remove it in time to prevent unconsciousness and death.”

  23. For G-d’s sake, why don’t they just stop spinning the damn thing over their heads?!?! Where on that toy does it guarantee that the rubber will never break?

  24. Munsoned says:

    Happy FUN BALL!
    -only $14.95-

    Warning: Pregnant women, the elderly and children under 10 should avoid prolonged exposure to Happy Fun Ball.

    Caution: Happy Fun Ball may suddenly accelerate to dangerous speeds.

    Happy Fun Ball Contains a liquid core, which, if exposed due to rupture, should not be touched, inhaled, or looked at.

    Do not use Happy Fun Ball on concrete.

    Discontinue use of Happy Fun Ball if any of the following occurs:
    Tingling in extremities
    Loss of balance or coordination
    Slurred speech
    Temporary blindness
    Profuse sweating
    Heart palpitations

    If Happy Fun Ball begins to smoke, get away immediately. Seek shelter and cover head.

    Happy Fun Ball may stick to certain types of skin.

    When not in use, Happy Fun Ball should be returned to its special container and kept under refrigeration…

    Failure to do so relieves the makers of Happy Fun Ball, Wacky Products Incorporated, and its parent company Global Chemical Unlimited, of any and all liability.

    Ingredients of Happy Fun Ball include an unknown glowing substance which fell to Earth, presumably from outer space.

    Happy Fun Ball has been shipped to our troops in Saudi Arabia and is also being dropped by our warplanes on Iraq.

    Do not taunt Happy Fun Ball.

    Happy Fun Ball comes with a lifetime guarantee.

    Happy Fun Ball


  25. aka Cat says:

    @Electroqueen: I’m conflicted on that. I had a friend who could get a rash just from being near peanuts. It was probably the dust-sized particles from the container that did it and that shouldn’t be a problem with peanut butter, and her case is extreme. But it’s still scary.

  26. ancientsociety says:
  27. Munsoned says:
  28. TangDrinker says:

    How many of us had those wooden paddles with the rubber ball attached to it via a flimsy elastic band and a STAPLE? And how many of us went blind by playing with it? You get bopped in the head once, pull the ball off, and use the paddle to whack your siblings. That’s fun.

    this toy looks like something you’d use to torture someone without leaving too many marks.

  29. aka Cat says:

    @TangDrinker: Don’t give the US gov’t any ideas.

  30. rawsteak says:

    with the exception of the rubber cord, all these injuries could happen with a regular yo-yo, including strangulation! of course, if a kid dies by way of a yo-yo, im pretty sure a parent would either say, “well, he deserved it.” or “damn you, bible stories!! david and goliath killed my kid!!”

  31. These comments are making me laugh a lot today. @AlisonAshleigh: I had the same reaction to the stories of injuries.

  32. laddibugg says:

    @CatMoran: hell, even then someone will still find a way to hurt themselves.

  33. The children! Someone think of the children! It’s a fucking shame that children these days aren’t exposed to the most important learning tool: first-hand cause and effect. You touch a hot stove, you hurt yourself, you don’t do it again. You swing a toy around like a spazzed out fucktard, you hurt yourself, you don’t do it again. No, instead, we’re “protecting” our children against the most primitive forms of learning.

    The United States of America: Raising a generation of homogenized, plastic-wrapped pussies.

  34. royal72 says:

    can we just start executing people for utter stupidity? please, please, please. you plug ’em in and i’ll hit the button…
    – any last words?
    – [sob] i was just trying to save my kid from the yoyo thingy, i don’t wanna die.
    – don’t worry, your kid will learn twice as much with you outta the way.
    – who we got next?

  35. Vegconsumer says:

    Pretty much everything can be dangerous if not used correctly. Companies cannot protect against user stupidity.

  36. meepmeep says:

    Does anyone remember original click clacks? Now those caused some heavy hand/arm bruising.

  37. I love how that page is actually called “Water Yo-Yo Scare Stories”.

    It would appear that the two people responsible for the site do not know what a “scare story” actually is.

    Or maybe they do. In which case, they’re being commendably honest in labelling their concerns thus, for those concerns do indeed appear to be unnecessarily alarmist.

    Since the complainants clearly wouldn’t know what to do with an apostrophe even if they’d been given a six-week intensive punctuation training course, though, I suspect the humour of this situation, and of most other situations, escapes them.

  38. UpsetPanda says:

    This kind of reminds me of the J.C. Penney commercial (I think it’s JCP) with the kid whose mom is on the phone and whispers that she got him a “d-o-g” and when the kid behind her goes “I’m getting a dog?!” I guess she, all of a sudden, thinks she has to get him something that he doesn’t know about.

    Then she gives him one of those kids’ computers that spell and have a set amount of games on it for the kid. I noticed when I was reading it that the kid also got a dog and at the end of the commercial, decided to play with the useless computer toy than his brand new dog.

    I just thought that was really, really sad, that JCP showed the kid playing with the computer toy and the poor dog is just sitting next to him.

  39. UpsetPanda says:

    * oops, “watching it” not “reading it”

  40. Comeaja says:

    “So, my son was playing with one the other day and just happened to stuff it down his throat! To my horror, he COULD NOT BREATHE!”

    You know what, I have a solution, lets just ban all forms of motion. Much safer then.

  41. LESSTHANKIND says:

    There’s only 78 people in New Jersey?

  42. Trai_Dep says:

    Far-fetched yo-yo mishap or auto-erotic asphyxiation? I’ve vote the latter.

    If they weren’t Jersey kids: clearly it’s suicide by children realizing the number of years left before they can move to Manhattan is simply insurmountable.

  43. aka Cat says:

    @meepmeep: Remember them? I’ve still got a set! Solid glass, the real deal. And I still can’t do a damn thing with them but smack ’em into my arm. lol.

  44. Dr.Ph0bius says:

    I was sexually assaulted by a water yo-yo and I agree they should be banned. I still remember the feel of its cold, rubbery balls in my face… I may look ok, but like those kids, I suffered scarring too… scarring in my very soul. :(

  45. @ErnieMcCracken: I still bust out laughing when I hear “Do not taunt Happy Fun Ball”.