Keeping children in Wiltshire safe from cleaning product injuries

Families in Wiltshire are being urged by the UK Cleaning Products Industry Association (UKCPI) and the Royal Society for the Prevention Accidents (RoSPA) to take action to protect their children from the risks of household cleaning products.

The latest phase of the Take Action Today, Put Them Away campaign, funded by UKCPI, was launched on 1st October in Wiltshire.

This follows the scheme’s success in 24 areas of the UK including Birmingham, Liverpool, King’s Lynn, Nottingham, Newcastle, Bradford, Lincolnshire, Warwickshire and Northern Ireland where 400,000 families have been aided in preventing poisonings and eye injuries.

In Wiltshire, accidental poisonings accounted for 120 emergency admissions for 0 – 4 year olds between 2017/18- 2019/20.

As part of the campaign, a handy magnetic notepad featuring key safety advice will be 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.

“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.”

Philip Malpass, Director General of UKCPI, said: “Cleaning products are designed to be safe to use and to provide the clean and hygienic home we often take for granted today. The accidents we see involving young children and cleaning products are avoidable and whilst the severity of the injuries is generally low, we hope that this campaign will remind parents to follow the usage instructions on the packaging, and in so doing, avoid unnecessary accidents.”

Val Scrase, Managing Director of Virgin Care in Wiltshire, which manages children’s community services, said: “This is a fantastic initiative from ROSPA and we are delighted to be part of this programme which will keep accident prevention high on the agenda and be beneficial to children and families, aiming to reduce accidental poisoning across the county.”

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.

About UKCPI

UKCPI is the leading trade association representing UK producers of cleaning and hygiene products from household soaps, washing powders, liquids, disinfectants, air care and polishes to the professional cleaning and hygiene products used in industrial and institutional applications.

They provide advice and guidance to manufacturers, distributors and users of cleaning and hygiene products. UKCPI also works in partnership with policymakers, the public and the media, to inform public discussions about cleanliness, hygiene and sustainable cleaning.

For more details about the UKCPI, visit www.ukcpi.org

Contact the UKCPI on ukcpi@ukcpi.org or call 01829 770055.