Sunday 17 December 2017

'My world fell apart because of a nappy sack' - young mother speaks of anguish after 7-month-old suffocates

Beth Amison (23) has warned parents over the dangers of nappy sacks

Beth Amison (23) with her baby Maison who died after choking on a nappy sack
Beth Amison (23) with her baby Maison who died after choking on a nappy sack

Cormac Fitzgerald

A mother whose 7-month-old baby suffocated on a nappy sack has spoken of her anguish at the loss and warned other parents of their danger.

Beth Amison (23), from Hednesford, Staffordshire, in England, was speaking out as part of a campaign organised by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) to highlight the dangers of nappy sacks.

Nappy sacks are thin, plastic sacks used to dispose of soiled nappies. Many parents tend to leave them near the cot or under the mattress for convenience when changing the baby.

Beth found her baby, Maison, dead in his cot after he had suffocated in 2013. He had choked on a nappy sack after he had managed to get some out of the changing bag near his cot.

She said that the death had "destroyed her life"

“My world fell apart because of a nappy sack," said Beth.

"I urge anyone who is around babies to think about the possible dangers before they become a problem.

Don't have the ‘it won't happen to me’ or ‘it didn't do me any harm, so I'm not going to think about it’ attitude, because when tragedy strikes, it leaves you heartbroken forever,” she said.

The coroner in England ruled Maison's death as an accident at the time, and RoSPA said that deaths like these are far too common.

There have been 16 deaths due to nappy sacks recorded across England and Wales since 2001. There are no known cases of deaths due to the sacks in Ireland.

Sheila Merrill, public health advisor with RoSPA, said that people need to be more cautious with the sacks.

"While most people are well aware plastic bags can be dangerous to children they don’t associate these risks with nappy sacks so are less likely to take the same safety precautions," she said.

RoSPA has urged parents to follow these guidelines when it comes to using nappy sacks:

- Always keep them (and other plastic bags) away from babies and young children

- Never place nappy sacks in or near a baby’s cot or pram

- Buy nappy sacks on a roll, where possible

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