VIC: Dangerous toys destroyed for a safer Christmas

Published: 
23 Oct 2014
  • 26,000 toys seized for breaching safety standards
  • Consumer Affairs Victoria enforcing strict safety standards
  • Napthine Government protecting children from harmful toys

Minister for Consumer Affairs Heidi Victoria today helped destroy hundreds of dangerous toys, putting safety first for families during National Children’s Week as the Christmas shopping period approaches.

Ms Victoria said Consumer Affairs Victoria inspectors seized more than 39,000 items in the 2013/14 financial year, including 26,000 non-compliant toys that breached safety standards.

“The products being destroyed today pose a variety of risks to children, including the potential to cause choking, eye injuries or lead poisoning,” Ms Victoria said.

“The Napthine Government through Consumer Affairs Victoria enforces strict safety standards and ban orders to ensure products available for sale are safe. We are sending a clear warning to manufacturers and retailers that unsafe goods are simply not acceptable.

“Inspectors work hard to ensure products and toys brought into Victorian homes are safe and pose no threat to the well-being of children.”

In 2013-14, Consumer Affairs Victoria inspected 887 shops, businesses and warehouses to ensure product safety compliance under the Australian Consumer Law.

This year’s confiscated toys include:

  • toys for children under three-years-old, which can break into small parts and pose a choking hazard;
  • projectile toys, which can injure children’s eyes;
  • lead-based face paints that can cause poisoning; and
  • toy-like novelty cigarette lighters.

There are serious penalties and consequences for supplying products that fail to meet the mandatory standard.

In one of its most recent cases, Consumer Affairs Victoria identified face paints that did not comply with the cosmetics information standard.

The trader, DW International Trading Pty Ltd, and its director Bo Hui Dong were fined $30,000 for supplying the lead-based face paints capable of migrating lead over 14 times the allowable limit, which can cause serious and sometimes permanent health problems.

Ms Victoria said toy sales soar closer to the Christmas period so it is paramount that products available for sale comply with safety standards and do not pose any risks to children.

“Under Australian Consumer Law, a supplier who fails to comply with a mandatory safety standard can face fines of up to $220,000 for individuals and $1.1 million for a body corporate,” said Ms Victoria.

Anyone with concerns about product safety issues can contact Consumer Affairs Victoria on 1300 55 81 81 or visit www.consumer.vic.gov.au

Contact details

Media contact: Carolyn Jones 0437 996 560 carolyn.jones@minstaff.vic.gov.au
Consumer Affairs (VIC)