Campaign to stop accidental poisonings of Calderdale children

Families in Calderdale are being urged by the Royal Society for the Prevention Accidents (RoSPA) to take action to protect their children from the risks of household cleaning products.

Sunday, 25th July 2021, 7:00 am

In Calderdale accidental poisonings accounted for 95 emergency admissions for 0 – 4 year olds between 2017/18- 2019/20.

As part of the campaign, a handy magnetic notepads featuring key safety advice were handed out to thousands of families by health visitors and children’s centre staff.

Ashley Martin, RoSPA’s public health adviser, said: “The notepad acts as a constant reminder in family kitchens to store cleaning products out of reach, out of sight and in a locked cupboard.

Take Action Today Presentation

“Due to their inquisitive nature, children under the age of five are most at risk of accidentally swallowing or getting household cleaning products, like liquid laundry capsules, into their eyes. Even products with a child-resistant closure cannot guarantee safety - they only reduce the risk by delaying access to the product.”

Calderdale Council’s Public Health Early Years lead, Rachel Smith, said: “The largest number of childhood accidents happen in the home and the majority of these are preventable. We’re pleased to support the ‘Take Action Today, Put Them Away’ campaign and promote safety messages around the home environment - something which is especially important as many families may be spending more time in the home due to the COVID pandemic.

“Our early years teams, which includes the Health Visiting service, will be promoting safety advice and handing out notepads with key safety messages and important advice for parents or carers. A good simple step to take is to consider the eye-level of a child and make sure any cleaning products are above this level or stored in a locked cabinet or cupboard. Seeing things at a child’s eye-level gives a clear appreciation of safety issues that may not have been previously considered, supporting safer homes from top to bottom.”

Take action today, put them away advice to parents includes:

• Store household cleaning products out of reach of children, preferably in a locked cupboard

• Always store chemicals in their original containers

• Never pierce or break laundry capsules or tablets

• Always close the lid of any product

• In the event of an incident, follow advice on the product pack and seek medical attention.

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