Trading Standards officers from the City of Edinburgh Council have issued an alert regarding ‘bling’ products which pose a risk of choking babies and young toddlers.
The recent fad involves customising babies’ dummies, dummy clips, bottles, feeding equipment, and even shoes and sunglasses - with small brightly covered imitation gems.
However, the gems can easily come loose and be swallowed or inhaled. Another danger comes from the glue used to attach the gems, which can soften when the item is sterilised and may also be toxic or harmful. This can lead to the gems becoming detached in clumps, which can create a further choking hazard.
It is believed these items are being made by people working from home, who may not be aware of the strict safety rules for children’s goods.
Councillor Lesley Hinds, Environment Convener for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “Our advice to parents is not to use any of these so-called ‘bling’ items as they could harm your baby or toddler.
“We would also advise anyone who is producing these items from their own home to stop doing so as they are unsafe and do not comply with strict safety regulations.”
In the UK the manufacture of goods such as dummies and feeding equipment is highly regulated to ensure that safety standards are met. Illegal sales can incur a fine of up to £20,000.
Members of the public with information regarding the sale of these items have been asked to contact Citizens Advice Direct on 08454 04 05 06 with their concerns.
Edinburgh-based businesses can obtain advice from Trading Standards on 0131 529 3030.