More children swallowing button batteries, cleaning agents during pandemic

More people, especially children, are getting seriously hurt on some household items while we've all been spending more time at home during the pandemic.

In December, a 2-year-old Lubbock girl died after swallowing a button lithium battery, these small batteries are in TV remotes, electronics, and children's toys. 

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission says the number of children swallowing these batteries has nearly doubled, up 93%, over the last year. 

"Young kids see them, think they're candy and they swallow them and it creates a terrible problem as far as breathing goes in their esophagus as well as damge to their internal organs," said Joseph Martyak with the Consumre Product Safety Commission. 


So keep TV remote controls away from kids and make sure battery compartments in toys are secured.  

The CPSC says ER treatments for children swallowing cleaning agents are up 84% and soaps and detergents are up 60%. That means watch out for kids eating laundry detergent pods, cleaning supplies, and disinfectants. 

"Make sure you keep them in their original bottles so they don't look like something a child would drink, thinking it's juice, as well as make sure they are secured and away from children, locked up," said Martyak. 

Injuries from power tools doubled, as more people are working on the yard or DIY home improvement projects. 

ER-treated injuries from fireworks are up 56%. And the CPSC warns sparklers are not safe for children.

Explained Martyak, "Keep in mind a sparkler burns at a temperature of 2,000 degrees. That's like a blow torch and none of us would hand a blow torch to a child to play with."  

There were 39% more injuries from riding skateboards, scooters, hoverboards, ATV's, mopeds and minibikes.  


And as more people hopped on a bike this past year, some for the first time in a while, bicycle injuries jumped 21% for people over age 40, and 39% for people over age 70.

"Enjoy bike riding, but make sure you wear a helmet. And make sure the helmet has a sticker on it that says it meets the CPSC standards, for bike helmets," added Martyak.

The CPSC offers safety checklists for all of these home products.