Nappy sacks: be aware of suffocation risk

All parents need to be aware of storing plastic nappy disposal bags safely to avoid suffocation risks for babies, say experts

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Parents are being reminded about the potential dangers of flimsy, plastic nappy sacks.

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At least 18 babies have died in the UK from choking on the nappy-disposal bags according to the Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT).

Despite being able to grasp items and put them into their mouths, babies find it difficult to let go or remove them when in trouble, and this can lead to potentially fatal accidents.

The charity, who runs Child Safety Week, is advising parents on the safest way to store nappy sacks, as babies will naturally try and reach out to them.

“If a baby gets hold of a nappy sack, their natural tendency is to put their hand to their mouth,” says Katrina Philips, CEO of CAPT.

“Nappy sacks are so flimsy that they easily get sucked in, covering the baby’s face, and they won’t be able to pull the bag away.

“It takes just a few moments for a baby to suffocate.  So it’s really important to keep nappy sacks well out your baby’s reach.  Under the mattress is one of the worst places to store them.”

What’s the best way to store nappy sacks?

You should try and store nappy sacks at a safe distance away from your little one’s cot, and never place them in their cot or pram.

RoSPA, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, has successfully developed nappy-sack guidelines for manufacturers and retailers, setting out the steps that can be taken to help reduce the risks associated with using nappy sacks products.

These include having clear warning labels on packaging to alert parents to their potentially-deadly dangers.

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