Button batteries in remotes and talking books are a severe hazard, the consumer watchdog has warned.
Battery buttons like these may be harming to kids.
And they pose a major risk for young children, and should be kept out of reach of minors, the Competition and Consumer Commission has warned in a joint ‘Battery Controlled ‘ campaign by Energizer, Kidsafe.
The coin-sized lithium button batteries can lodge in the throats of children, if swallowed, where saliva immediately triggers an electrical current, causing a chemical reaction that can severely burn through the oesophagus in two hours.
Button batteries are found in remote controls for car doors and MP3 speakers, calculators, hearing aides, bathroom scales, reading lights, flameless candles, talking and singing books/cards.
An estimated four children in Australia present to an emergency department with a button battery related injury every week, however, the awareness of risks associated with button batteries is “worryingly low” , warns ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court.
The advice from the campaign is to:
· Examine devices and make sure the battery compartment is secure
· Keep coin-sized button batteries and devices out of sight and out of reach
· Dispose of old button batteries immediately
· If swallowing of a button battery is suspected, go to the emergency room immediately
Call the Poisons Information Centre on 13 11 26 for additional treatment information.