Stoke-on-Trent City Council is encouraging residents to check their electrical items and make sure coin and button batteries are disposed of safely.
These types of batteries are found in electrical gadgets, toys and small remotes. They are not only a choking hazard but they also contain lithium which, if swallowed, can cause severe and even fatal internal burns.
Residents are advised to check electrical devices in the home and any home where their child may spend time. If they contain coin or button batteries make sure the battery cover is securely fixed so children cannot get access to them.
It is important to keep coin and button batteries out of the reach of children where possible. Dead batteries can still cause harm and should be wrapped in tape before they are recycled. As part of the coin and button battery campaign, the city council is holding an ‘amnesty’, with battery recycling bins in the recycling centres in Burslem and Hanford, Local Centres and libraries as well as those found in local supermarkets and large electrical stores. Coin and button batteries should be wrapped in tape before they are recycled.
Opening times for Hanford and Burslem Household Waste Recycling Centres can be found at www.stoke.gov.uk/thetip.
Councillor Carl Edwards, cabinet member for housing and environment, said: “Residents may be familiar with weapons amnesties like the one recently run while the Knife Angel was in Stoke-on-Trent.
“We want to make people aware that coin and button batteries can also be incredibly dangerous and potentially fatal if swallowed. Children are particularly at risk and, as a city council, we want to keep people safe and make sure these batteries are disposed of correctly.
“I would urge all residents to check their electronic items for these batteries, make sure the battery compartment is secured and that dead batteries are disposed of correctly.”
Anyone who thinks a child has swallowed a battery should take them straight to the nearest A&E or dial 999 for an ambulance.