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Girl, 2, nearly dies swallowing 14 magnets that linked together inside her body
October 6, 2021
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A worried mum is calling on the Government to take action against online marketplaces which are selling lethal toys to children after her daughter nearly died from swallowing 14 tiny magnets.
Sam McCarthy, 35, is backing a new campaign to regulate online sellers after her two-year-old Rebecca was rushed to hospital when she had mistaken the colourful magnets for sweets.
The magnets were so powerful that they had linked together inside of Rebecca's body and had ruptured three parts of her intestine, Sky News reports.
"I would hate for any other child to go through what Becca suffered because of buying dangerous toys via online marketplaces," Ms McCarthy said.
"The government needs to take urgent action before any other child is critically injured or even dies."
Her call for action comes at the same time as a new research study which revealed that nearly half of tested toys sold by third-party online sellers have been deemed unsafe to play with.
Retailers Amazon, eBay, AliExpress and Wish have come under scrutiny after the study found that toys sold on their sites could potentially strangle, poison, choke, burn, or electrocute children.
The British Toy and Hobby Association (BTHA) reported that hazards such as small, easy-to-swallow parts and magnets, and cords that could wrap around a child’s neck, were found in 48% of the 225 tested items.
They discovered that almost nine in 10 (88%) playthings, did not comply with rules such as for levels of chemicals or toxins.
The study called attention to a flying ball remote-control helicopter on Amazon, which features an easy-to-open compartment for button batteries, which could be deadly if swallowed by a child.
It was reported that a set of dolls on eBay contained a restricted chemical at a level of 36.41% when it should have been no more than 0.1%.
Unlike high street retailers, there is no legal requirement for online marketplaces to check the safety of products listed by third-party sellers.
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The BTHA is calling for a crackdown as parents start to bargain hunt for Christmas presents online.
eBay said: “We work closely with authorities including Trading Standards to help ensure sellers and listings comply with laws and regulations.”
Amazon said: “We require all products in our store to comply with applicable laws and regulations.”
Wish and AliExpress said they took action against traders breaching safety rules.