Summer Steer was just four years old when she died after swallowing a button battery in June 2013.
A decade later, her grieving mother is calling for a total ban on the product.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: Mum calls for ban on button batteries.
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The little girl from Queensland was the first child in Australia to die after swallowing a button battery — common in many household items, including children’s products.
Two other young girls have since died after ingesting button batteries.
Summer’s mother, Andrea Shoesmith still doesn’t know where the button battery that killed her daughter came from.
“We were sent home from the hospital three times, with her vomiting blood,” she told 7NEWS.
“(We) finally took her to the hospital 24 hours later (and) they thought that they could remove the battery without any repercussions or death.
“At that stage, they weren’t aware of the effects (the batteries have) so they thought they could take it out.
“But unfortunately, Summer didn’t make it.”
Andrea Shoesmith’s young daughter Summer died after swallowing a button battery in 2013. Credit: 7NEWS
The experience was devastating, Shoesmith said.
“It’s like yesterday for us.
“It’s happened twice again (to two other young girls) … there are still 20 children a week being admitted to hospital with suspected button battery ingestion.”
Shoesmith said she isn’t surprised that products with button batteries are still consistently being recalled for not meeting safety standards.
There have been some changes, but “nowhere near enough”, she said.
“If batteries are still being sold not to Australian standards … the threat is still there.
“There’s a vast amount (of companies) that have now been fined for supplying a product that is not following Australian standards.”
Tougher laws need to be put in place and fines should be larger, Shoesmith said.
‘Get rid of them’
Shoesmith urged consumers to stop buying products that include button batteries.
“If you’re at the shops, and you have a choice between buying something with a button battery and purchasing something without (one), then choose to buy one without it,” she said.
“If we’re not buying them, they’re not going to be making the money to produce them.”
Shoesmith doesn’t want other people to suffer the “lifelong” and “unimaginable pain” that she and three other families now live with.
The only way to ensure safety is to no longer allow the sale of products with button batteries, Shoesmith said.
“They kill children.
“You turn your head for one second and your child puts a button battery in their mouth, and there’s no way of detecting that.
“I watched my daughter throw up blood for 24 hours with no one listening to me.
“We just need to get rid of them.”
A total of 132 products have been recalled despite the new consumer laws, including kids toys. Credit: Supplied
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) deputy chair Catriona Lowe said it was critical that suppliers comply with standards.
“Tragically, three young Australian children lost their lives … that was one of the key impetuses for the introduction of the standards,” she said.
The ACCC has issued about $500,000 in fines to six businesses since the standards were introduced in mid-2022, including the Reject Shop and Dusk, who were fined for non-compliance.
A total of 132 products have been recalled despite the new consumer laws, including kid’s toys.
Many were recalled for failing to safeguard battery compartments.
“Don’t buy them. It’s as simple as that, don’t buy them,” Shoesmith said.