A father who bought a toy dog for his toddler son at Country Comes to Town (CCTT) has criticised stallholders after discovering it was potentially dangerous.
George McCoo and wife Jenna, who live at Scotch Street, bought the £5 toy for 20-month-old Jacob from a stall at the top of Woodhouse Street on Saturday.
It was only after they got home that George, an engineer, inspected it closely and spotted what he describes as “shoddy workmanship”.
He said, “There was no safety screw on the battery compartment, so a child could easily have opened it. And when I touched the batteries they were so hot they made me jump.
“There were also brown stains on the inside which looked like acid which had leaked out.”
He added, “We knew our son was too young for the toy when we bought it and we weren’t going to let him play with it on his own.
“But other parents mightn’t have realised the dangers and could have given it to their children.
“I wanted to give people a heads-up. I am sure other people were caught out too. They were for sale on a few stalls.”
George took to Facebook and quickly received responses from other parents. One woman, who bought the same toy, said her daughter had taken it to bed. “I know there was no screw but I must check the batteries. He (the stallholder) kept making a point of how the batteries were included.”
Another woman said she had bought bubble guns for her two-year-old and four-year-old and screws were missing from the battery compartment.
Mr McCoo, a production manager, said the lack of screws was a major “no-no”. He added, “There is no excuse for selling something that is potentially dangerous.”
Bryan McLaughlin, secretary of Country Comes to Town, said he was aware of the complaints and that new safety safeguards would be introduced from next year requiring all toys to comply completely with current EU and GB safety legislation.
CCTT already has a list of items that traders are not permitted to sell including football strips, flags, military uniforms, knives and/or replica guns and ‘funny string’.
He said organisers had also been alerted to the alleged sale of counterfeit designer goods by at least one trader. He added, “Once again, it will be made clear to future applicants for pitches that the sale of such counterfeit goods will not be tolerated.”
A spokesperson for ABC Council said, “Issues relating to consumer safety will be investigated by the council’s environmental health team once they receive a complaint.”