The LED wristbands distributed at Saturday evening’s AFL Grand Final in Brisbane have been urgently recalled after a safety hazard was identified by Product Safety Australia.
In a historic first, the 2020 AFL Grand Final was held under lights at the Gabba, rather than the traditional afternoon timeslot.
Utilising the twilight conditions, over 31,000 LED wristbands were distributed to the spectators in attendance, which lit up throughout halftime performance by pop band Sheppard.
The gimmick has also been used by musicians Taylor Swift and Coldplay during world tours.
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However, the wristbands have since been identified by Product Safety Australia as a potential choking hazard, and the promotional item has been recalled.
Lights show during the half time of the AFL Grand Final.Source:Getty Images
“The battery compartment of the wristband is not adequately secured and the button batteries in the product are easily accessible,” the Product Safety Australia website said.
“If young children gain access to the button batteries and ingest them, they may suffer internal burn injuries, which can result in serious illness and even death. In addition, the batteries may pose a choking hazard to young children.
“Consumers who received a free promotional wristband should immediately dispose of the wristband by placing it in an outside household rubbish bin, out of reach of children.”
We're investigating reports about wristbands containing button batteries offered at the Gabba during the AFL Grand Final, which may not be properly secured. If you received these wristbands, dispose of them without exposing the batteries, which can be extremely harmful to kids. pic.twitter.com/XaUFmnxgCf
An SMS message has been sent to ticket holders for Saturday’s match between the Richmond Tigers and Geelong Cats, urging spectators to “immediately dispose” of the wristbands.
“A shocked emergency paediatrician took just two seconds to expose the batteries, which, if swallowed by children can burn through tissues within hours,” charitable organisation Kidsafe Queensland said in a statement.
“Warn others. Share with anyone you know who attended the game to immediately dispose of the bands in the bin. Do not expose the batteries.”
The LED wristbands distributed at the AFL Grand Final.Source:Facebook
Kidsafe Queensland chief executive Susan Teerds said the LED devices proved why legislation was needed for mandatory regulation of button batteries.
“We’ve been looking at this for seven years … we’ve done a lot of campaigns,” Teerds said, as reported by ABC News.
“I still can’t believe that marketing people think that these useless little flashing devices are appropriate to put out into the public space where they could cause the death or serious injury of a child.
“If you consider there might have been 30,000 attendees … that’s 60,000 batteries that are killers, out in the public.
“If you know anybody who attended the AFL grand final you need to contact them immediately because this is a very urgent, life-threatening situation.
“Find the wristband, do not take the batteries out, and put it in the bin.”
The AFL has been contacted for comment.
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