WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), along with the consumer product safety agencies in Canada and Mexico, are reminding parents and caregivers about the dangers of unintentional poisoning. During Poison Prevention Week 2013 (March 17 - 23), the agencies will promote poison awareness.
Unintentional poisoning is one of the leading causes of injury among children. Even though these incidents can be prevented, thousands of children in the United States visit emergency rooms each year after consuming poisonous substances.
"Child-resistant packaging saves lives," said CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum. "When used properly, this special packaging can prevent a child's exposure to hazardous items. Parents must always remember to reseal the packaging after each use."
Child-resistant packaging, critical safety messaging, and education efforts have contributed to a significant decline in injuries and deaths. However, the United States, Canada, and Mexico are aiming to reduce further the number of unintentional poisonings. The three countries' consumer product safety agencies are issuing this joint announcement to raise awareness among consumers, who play a critical role in safely choosing, using, and disposing of potentially dangerous products.
Among the recommended safety tips for parents and caregivers:
- Keep chemicals, medications, cleaning supplies, and art supplies not meant for children safely stored in a locked cabinet or box, out of the reach of children.
- Keep household chemicals and medicines in their original containers and leave the original labels on the products.
- Make sure children understand the hazard symbols on household chemical products so they do not unintentionally harm themselves or others.
- If a poisoning is suspected, contact the local Poison Help Line immediately at: 1-800-222-1222.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with the use of thousands of types of consumer products under the agency’s jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries, and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $1 trillion annually. CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical or mechanical hazard. CPSC's work to help ensure the safety of consumer products - such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters and household chemicals -– contributed to a decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 40 years.
Federal law bars any person from selling products subject to a publicly-announced voluntary recall by a manufacturer or a mandatory recall ordered by the Commission.
To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury go online to www.SaferProducts.gov or call CPSC's Hotline at 800-638-2772 or teletypewriter at 301-595-7054 for the hearing impaired. Consumers can obtain news release and recall information at www.cpsc.gov, on Twitter @USCPSC or by subscribing to CPSC's free e-mail newsletters.
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