Child swallows head of popular kids' TV character
A QUEENSLAND man and his wife are warning other parents to be wary about buying a children's watch featuring Peppa Pig after their daughter swallowed a large decoration attached to the band.
Clinton Byrne, originally from Sarina, posted a photo of a CT scan of his 3-year-old daughter's oesophagus showing the distinct head shape of the popular TV character.
"Well, what an eventful night and day! Eadie finds a way to swallow the Peppa Pig whilst asleep from her watch," he wrote.
"To anyone wanting to spend $15 on this watch from Target or Big W or eBay I say DO NOT BUY IT and it should be removed for sale immediately! It is for children 3 and over and clearly not safe! (sic)."
Mr Byrne, 44, and his wife Georgie, now live in Perth and were at The Perth Fringe Festival Sunday night when they received a call from their babysitter just before 8pm saying Eadie had come out of her room and told them she swallowed something.
Mrs Byrne, 36, told The Courier-Mail they rushed home.
"Eadie said she was sucking on it … she was in her bed and I don't know if she fell asleep with it and started coughing, which woke her up, of if she was awake when it happened," she said.
"I don't think it would have happened if she was awake. With the size of the Peppa Pig head, I would have thought she would have spat it straight out if she was awake.
"She was probably asleep or half asleep."
Mrs Byrne said Eadie did not usually sleep with the watch and was normally asleep before 8pm so it was not clear as to what happened.
They all searched Eadie's bed but could not find any of the metal parts of the watch, including the clasps that screwed the head decoration to the band of the watch.
Mrs Byrne said Eadie, who absolutely loves Peppa Pig, had only received the watch a few weeks earlier.
She underwent an endoscopy on Monday to remove the head, which was returned to the family in a jar
"I didn't realise how big the Peppa Pig head was. It was the size of a 10 cent piece," Mrs Byrne said.
"The surgeons also said they could see the other metal parts further down and they'll pass by themselves."
The Byrne's - who have four daughters including Olivia, 11, and Chloe, 9, from Mr Byrne's previous marriage - as well as 1-year-old Florence, are now warning parents to be vigilant.
"If it had a different path the airways would have restricted Eadie's breathing and we would have had to call an ambulance straight away," Mrs Byrne said.
"Put watches at a high height.
"Be extra vigilant when (little children) go to sleep that nothing is near them."
Mrs Byrne also questioned the quality of a watch labelled safe for children as young as three if it seemingly came apart so easily.
"If they're going to sell something that says it's for ages three plus, they should make sure the clasps are secure," she said.
"We're grateful it wasn't the button battery."
Mrs Byrne said she hoped the manufacturer of the watch would either make the watch more durable or consider raising the age recommendation.
As for Eadie, Mrs Byrne said she wanted to watch Peppa Pig while in hospital waiting for her surgery.
"She's totally obsessed with Peppa Pig," she said.
"She's a loyal fan and Peppa is still her favourite.
"The first thing she said was 'Mummy, can I get another watch?"
Attempts by the Courier Mail to contact Vimwood Australia, the company that imports the watch into Australia, were unsuccessful as their phone numbers were disconnected.