Mascot retailer fined for ignoring product safety
New South Wales Fair Trading Minister Anthony Roberts today said a Mascot retailer had been ordered to pay $1,079 by Newtown Local Court for displaying and selling a toy that posed a serious safety risk to children.
Mr Roberts said Zhen Sheng Jiang, trading as Mascot Variety, was convicted of supplying unsafe children’s toys.
“In October last year, Fair Trading investigators visited the Mascot Variety store at 1105 Botany Road, Mascot,” he said. “Investigators identified a children’s toy for sale, the Cement Mixer Intelligence Toys Mobile Machinery Shop Series by Leyuan, item number 8009, which did not meet the regulated safety standard for children’s toys."
“Rigorous testing revealed the toy failed to meet the requirements of the Australian toy standard due to small parts coming loose, potentially presenting a choking hazard for young children.
“In 2009, the store owner, Mr Jiang, was fined $550 for selling non-compliant children’s toys.”
Mr Roberts said suppliers and retailers of children‟s toys must understand their obligations and obey the law and should know Fair Trading regularly inspects the marketplace.
“In the past 12 months, Fair Trading investigators have visited more than 1,300 retail outlets in more than 300 towns, inspecting half a million toys,” he said.
From 1 January 2011, the new Australian Consumer Law introduced a national product safety regime and a number of new penalties and consequences for traders caught supplying and selling unsafe toys. Traders caught breaching the mandatory Australian Standard face fines of up to $1.1 million for corporations and $220,000 for individuals.
Tips on buying toys for children:
- buy washable, non-breakable toys for babies
- read the labelling on new toys. ‘Not suitable for children aged under three’ means there are small parts that could be swallowed - it is not an indication of skill level or intelligence
- check toys regularly for loose parts that may be choking dangers. Always read the label and any safety warnings
- toy chests and boxes should have a removable lid. Anything big enough to crawl inside must have ventilation holes, including tents. Helmets and masks must also have ventilation holes
- check that there are no gaps or holes that could trap a child's fingers
- be wary of toys that make loud noises - they can be harmful to hearing
- check for sharp edges or rough surfaces - they can cause cuts and splinters
- ensure ride-on toys are appropriate for the age of the child and are stable
- check magnetic toys for loose magnets. If magnets are swallowed they may cause blockage of the digestive system and serious injury.
NSW Fair Trading 13 32 20