Summer's Day powerful reminder on button battery dangers

Summer Steer
Summer Steer

AUSTRALIA'S consumer watchdog is reminding parents and carers about the risks of button batteries around children.

Kidsafe Queensland has launching its inaugural "Summer's Day" to remember the children who die each year from unintentional, preventable injuries.

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission deputy chair Delia Rickard said "Summer's Day" was named in memory of Summer Steer, the young girl who tragically lost her life after swallowing a button battery last year.

"An average of five children present at hospital emergency departments around Australia each week after an incident involving a battery," she said.

"These small, coin-sized batteries are everywhere in the home including in TV remote controls, kitchen and bathroom scales, flameless candles and tea lights, reading lights, calculators, hearing aids, talking books.

"If toddlers or children find one of these batteries and swallow them, the battery can lodge in the child's throat and cause a chemical reaction which burns through the oesophagus to the spine and into surrounding tissue in just a few hours."

Ms Rickard said the ACCC was working with the battery industry on a number of initiatives to improve the safety of button batteries.

"New packaging, along with warnings, is now starting to appear on products sold in Australia," she said.

"The ACCC has also been working with electrical safety regulators to mandate safer battery compartments in electronic equipment that uses a button battery and we expect to see progress in this area soon."

Topics:  consumers parents summer steer warning

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