Northamptonshire Children to be saved from cleaning product injuries

Early years and childcare

12 April 2024

Families in North Northamptonshire and West Northamptonshire are being urged by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) to take action to protect their children from the risks of household cleaning products. 

The latest phase of the Take Action Today, Put Them Away campaign, funded by the UK Cleaning Products Industry Association (UKCPI), is being launched on 16 April 2024.

As part of the campaign, a handy magnetic notepad featuring key safety advice will be handed out to thousands of families by health visitors and children’s centre staff.

In North Northamptonshire, accidental poisonings accounted for 55 emergency admissions for 0-4 year olds between 2018/19- 2020/21, while in West Northamptonshire, accidental poisonings accounted for 115 emergency admissions for 0-4 year olds between 2018/19-2020/21. 

The notepad acts as a constant reminder in family kitchens to store cleaning products out of reach, out of sight and in a locked cupboard.

Due to their inquisitive nature, children under the age of five are most at risk of accidentally swallowing or getting household cleaning products, like liquid laundry capsules, into their eyes. Even products with a child-resistant closure cannot guarantee safety - they only reduce the risk by delaying access to the product.
Jim Oram, RoSPA’s Public Health Project Officer
Cleaning products are designed to be safe to use and to provide the clean and hygienic home we often take for granted today. The accidents we see involving young children and cleaning products are avoidable. While the severity of the injuries are generally low, we hope that this campaign will remind parents to follow the usage instructions on the packaging, and in so doing, avoid unnecessary accidents.UKCPI's Philip Malpass

This follows the success of Take Action Today, Put Them Away campaigns in 44 areas of the UK including Birmingham, Liverpool, King’s Lynn, Nottingham, Newcastle, Bradford and Northern Ireland.

Over 700,000 families have been helped to prevent poisoning and eye injuries.

I’m delighted to be able to support this campaign to help to keep our youngest residents safe. RoSPA provide trusted advice to parents and carers and Take Action Today, Put Them Away, provides important information and advice to help keep children safe from the harms that can come from household cleaning products. I am sure that the magnetic pads which will be given out as part of this campaign, including through our Family Hubs, will be incredibly useful for families.Councillor Gill Mercer, North Northamptonshire Council’s Executive Member of Adults, Health and Wellbeing
Cleaning products can be dangerous to young children, but accidents are avoidable. I am assured to see the Take Action Today, Put Them Away campaign is being launched in Northamptonshire after great successes in other parts of the country. We are urging all parents and carers to store household cleaning products out of reach of children as part of our campaign to prevent accidental poisonings and eye injuries.Councillor Matt Golby, West Northamptonshire Council's Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Wellbeing and Health Integration

Take Action Today, Put them Away advice to parents includes:

  • Store household cleaning products out of reach of children, preferably in a locked cupboard 
  • Always store chemicals in their original containers
  • Never pierce or break laundry capsules or tablets
  • Always close the lid of any product
  • In the event of an incident, follow advice on the product pack and seek medical attention

UKCPI is the leading trade association representing UK producers of cleaning and hygiene products from household soaps, washing powders, liquids, disinfectants, air care and polishes to the professional cleaning and hygiene products used in industrial and institutional applications. 

It provides advice and guidance to manufacturers, distributors and users of cleaning and hygiene products. UKCPI also works in partnership with policymakers, the public and the media, to inform public discussions about cleanliness, hygiene and sustainable cleaning.