Be scared but stay safe at Hal­loween

Pilbara News - - Lifestyle - Gwyn­neth Hay­wood Gwyn­neth Hay­wood is the se­nior re­gional of­fi­cer at Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion.

The tra­di­tion of wear­ing cos­tumes at Hal­loween has been around for cen­turies but it’s some of the more re­cent dress­ing-up trends that give Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion cause for con­cern.

We need par­ents and car­ers to be aware of haz­ards.

Flammable clothes

Chil­dren can suf­fer se­vere burns or death if cloth­ing they are wear­ing catches fire.

Capes and drap­ing sleeves are of­ten made of syn­thetic ma­te­rial and a naked flame, such as a can­dle in a pump­kin, could cause the fab­ric to ig­nite.

Gen­er­ally flammable items will have a “high fire dan­ger, keep away from fire” warn­ing sign on the packet.

There is a manda­tory la­belling stan­dard for chil­dren’s nightwear in Aus­tralia. Take note of the ad­vice.

Flash­ing items with but­ton bat­ter­ies

Wool­worths has re­cently is­sued a na­tional re­call of spin­ning ghost and pump­kin Hal­loween wands be­cause they can crack open, caus­ing the but­ton bat­ter­ies to fall out.

It’s com­mon for chil­dren un­der five to be taken to hospi­tal emer­gency de­part­ments after swal­low­ing but­ton bat­ter­ies, which can get stuck in a child's throat and burn through the oe­soph­a­gus within two hours.

Prod­ucts like flash­ing witches noses, devil horns or ear­rings might not be aimed at young chil­dren but that doesn’t mean they won’t get into tiny hands.

If a child swal­lows a but­ton bat­tery do not let them eat or drink, do not make them vomit and seek im­me­di­ate med­i­cal at­ten­tion.

You can also speak to The Poi­sons In­for­ma­tion Cen­tre on 13 11 26.

Re­port prod­ucts you think are un­safe by email­ing con­sumer@ com­merce.wa.gov.au or phon­ing 1300 30 40 54.

Glow sticks/bracelets

In­fants or chil­dren can be ex­posed to chem­i­cals if glow sticks or bracelets are chewed on or bro­ken.

The flu­o­res­cent liq­uid con­tents may cause ir­ri­ta­tion to the eyes, skin or mouth.

Don’t let chil­dren chew glow bracelets and do not cut them off.

Make up / fake blood etc.

There needs to be cos­metic la­belling in English on face paints or crayons, nail pol­ishes, tem­po­rary tat­toos and gen­eral make-up.

Check in­gre­di­ents and make sure your child is not al­ler­gic to any­thing in the prod­uct.

Nov­elty con­tact lenses

A pre­scrip­tion is not re­quired and there is no age re­stric­tion on pur­chases of nov­elty con­tact lenses. How­ever, cer­tain pre-ex­ist­ing con­di­tions can mean con­tact lenses are not suit­able for some peo­ple.

Even if there is no med­i­cal rea­son to avoid us­ing them, a pro­fes­sional test­ing ses­sion with an op­ti­cian is ad­vis­able.

Fol­low any safety and care in­struc­tions and en­sure lenses are ster­ilised with ap­pro­pri­ate so­lu­tion be­fore putting them in.

Never share lenses with some­one else.

Fur­ther prod­uct safety in­for­ma­tion about all of these prod­ucts is avail­able at prod­uct safety.gov.au.

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