We all have those toys which operate with batteries. The walking talking doll, the truck, the car, the toys like
We all have those toys which operate with batteries. The walking talking doll, the truck, the car, the toys like the glow worm, which my daughter adored and we all enjoy watching our children cuddle up to them, play with them and fall asleep with them by their side. But have you ever considered how safe they are? And how often do you check the battery?
Like I said, my daughter loved her glow worm and would fall asleep hugging it. That’s what it was made to do and that’s what she loved. I never once considered it a dangerous toy. I believed it was well made, no sharp objects, the globe were well protected, and the battery was well cased and needed a screwdriver to disassemble it. I was happy with this and felt safe.
What I didn’t consider was what if the life of the battery. The only thing I took into consideration was how I was going to replace the battery once it stopped glowing. I also thought that was a good and the only indication for when to change it. I was terribly wrong.
I tucked Kat into bed along with her glow worm and kissed them both good night. The next morning I went into check on Kat and noticed a brownish tinge to her clothing and toy. On first inspection I thought that she must have been sick in her sleep and then I realized that the battery had leaked from the toy. It was quick as that; the battery was useless and now dangerous. I removed the glow worm and quickly woke Kat up and bathed her.
When I managed to get back to her toy I attempted to open it up but didn’t bother as it had leaked so bad I wasn’t game enough to keep it anymore anyway. I knew it wasn’t the actual glow worm but considering how bad the battery had leaked, I didn’t want to chance missing a little acid when cleaning it. I opted on throwing it out and buying a new one.
I tried to contact the makers of this battery but was unable to find a listing. What I did find out however, was that this is not a one off thing and it had happened many times to many different people.
Another common problem found with battery operated toys is when the battery corrodes without any warning. This fine powder can escape into the fabric of the toy and in turn the child can be placed in contact without knowing. I know over the years I have taken apart a battery operated toys and found a corroded battery inside and the toy still work fine. Novelty items for babies, in particular ‘battery-operated flashing baby dummies’ have been known to leak acid and burn the inside of a child’s mouth. During 2004 approximately 113 of these pacifiers were recalled due to this problem.
I became habitual in checking for this and would change them regularly and despite whether they looked fine or not or if the toy was working. The longest I would leave one in for was 6 months. I have never trusted the suggested life span of battery since this one time with the glow worm.
Exercising a little extra caution with battery operated toys is something everyone should do. The next time your child is playing with such a toy, watch how many times they put their mouth on it, kiss it and touch it. It is advice worth paying attention to….