Safety in the spotlight for Ekka
Published Tuesday, 15 August, 2023 at 10:58 AM
Attorney-General and Minister for Justice and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence
The Honourable Yvette D'Ath
- The Office of Fair Trading has conducted its annual product safety checks ahead of the Ekka.
- Three cosmetic items were identified without ingredient labelling.
- Eight plush toys contained a zipper which when opened exposed potential choking hazards.
- Labelling issues have been rectified and the plush toys either rectified or removed from supply.
Roll up, roll up, the Ekka is here and with this big event comes an alert for families to be on the lookout for dangerous toys and novelties when buying showbags or selecting prizes in sideshow alley.
Inspectors from the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) have been examining products in showbags to make sure they meet safety standards.
After searching more than 320 showbags, the OFT identified three cosmetic products, which included mascara and nail art, that did not have the ingredients labelled and eight plush toys that contained a zipper which when opened exposed inner stuffing that was considered a choking hazard.
Cosmetic products must list ingredients on the container, or on the product itself and should be available to consumers at the point of sale.
Inspectors from OFT will be back during the Ekka to recheck the showbags, examine prizes at sideshow alley and assess products from stallholders across the showgrounds to make sure they meet safety standards.
The six S’s of toy safety:
- Size – the smaller the child, the bigger the toy should be. Toys or novelties that are smaller than a ping pong ball or have small parts that can break off during play could choke a child under three years.
- Shape – be wary of products that could be easily swallowed and have sharp points or edges.
- Surface – small children will place objects in their mouths so make sure that all materials and finishes are non-toxic.
- Strings – anything over 30cm long may pose a strangulation hazard for a small child and should be removed.
- Secure battery compartments - make sure that all button-battery-operated products have a child-resistant battery compartment and that small children cannot access them.
- Supervision – nothing replaces close supervision by parents and carers.
Under the Australian Consumer Law, it is an offence to supply goods that do not comply with mandatory standards, or goods that have been banned.
Safety issues in consumer products, including toys, novelties, and products containing button batteries, can be reported to the OFT at www.qld.gov.au/fairtrading or by calling 13 QGOV (13 74 68).
Quotes attributable to the Attorney-General and Minister for Justice and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence, Yvette D’Ath:
“Showbags are an iconic part of going to the Ekka and we want to make sure kids are kept safe from dangerous items.
“It’s so important that parents and carers remain vigilant and think about the age appropriateness of showbags and prizes - keeping in mind that youngsters may have access to items brought home by older siblings.
“Be on the lookout for potential safety hazards such as items with sharp points and edges, unsecure button battery compartments or small parts that can become detached and cause serious harm to children.
“I’d like to thank showbag suppliers and Ekka vendors for taking the safety of their products seriously and working with Fair Trading during these checks.”
Media contact: Cullen Robinson 0418 170 474