Christmas gifts pose risk of public liability injury claims

Date: Dec 16, 2015

While it’s meant to be a time of rest and relaxation, the Christmas holiday period can quickly go from calm to stressful if an accident occurs.

Over this period, the risk of public liability injury claims increases, and it’s important that these accidents are dealt with by trained lawyers. Children’s toys are particularly risky in this regard, as the number of small parts or hazardous substances can cause danger if they aren’t properly installed by the manufacturers.

NSW Health recently released a statement detailing the various risks children face at this time of year, with the organisation paying notable attention to the type of batteries toys often ship with.

Batteries pose health risk to NSW children 

While most batteries can pose a danger to children in the wrong circumstances, NSW Health focused its attention on button batteries. These are much smaller than other varieties, making them easy to swallow, an event that poses a serious threat to a child.

According to Consumer Affairs New Zealand, button batteries can cause significant damage in a very short amount of time, and can result in disability or death in as little as two hours.

NSW Health reported that every year as many as 100 young children are hospitalised after swallowing these batteries, illustrating just how common the problem is. The organisation stated that a key factor in the danger of these batteries is the fact they are tiny, hence the name button batteries.

Button batteries are roughly the size of a 5 cent coin, merely two centimetres across. However, if swallowed, they can have a variety of adverse effects, ranging from infections to internal bleeding and alkali burns.

While many of these cases involve surgery or endoscopies to remove the batteries, Head of the Department of Ear Nose and Throat Surgery at Westmead Children’s Hospital Dr John Curotta says it’s better that the incidents never occur in the first place.

“Prevention is key so it’s important that parents and other carers make sure that toys, devices or equipment that require button batteries such as remote controls, keyboards, musical devices and digital thermometers are thoroughly checked to ensure the batteries are safely secured and can’t be accessed by small children,” he explained.

The lawyers at Gerard Malouf and Partners operate on a no win no fee basis. Contact the team today to discuss your public liability claim with the experts.

Call us now on 1800 004 878 to book a free appointment with one of my compensation experts or email your enquiry.