Published June 22, 2017
Many parents are worried that a new children’s toy known as the "Toothpick crossbow" -- which works just as it sounds -- could become as popular as fidget spinners among kids in the U.S.
Parents in China are pushing for the government to ban the popular toy out of fear that it could severely injure children.
The handheld crossbows that were originally created to shoot out toothpicks can fire at a distance of more than 65 feet, but if swapped for needles, they could be very dangerous.
The toy, if used with a toothpick, can puncture a balloon and pierce cardboard when shot directly at it, the Shanghai Daily reported. Tests showed that if the toothpick is replaced with a needle, it could crack glass.
The toy can be bought for as little as $1 and is spreading so quickly across China, store owners have said they've quickly sold out. Internet videos are giving step-by-step instructions on how to make a handheld crossbow at home.
Parents say that children don’t understand the danger and shoot people for fun.
Police in Chengdu, a major southwestern Chinese city, reportedly have stopped sales of the product, but many parents say they want the toy banned across the country before too many kids get hurt.