Tragedy As 2-YO Dies After Swallowing Button-Sized Battery
Main image via Daily Mail
A coroner's court has heard the tragic details of two-year-old Francesca Asan's untimely death.
The toddler's father, George, explained that his daughter had, unbeknownst to the family, taken a button-sized, three-volt battery out of a chest of drawers before swallowing it.
Her concerned parents twice took her to see a doctor - and a dentist - over the following week as the little girl became increasingly ill; it wasn't until Francesca went "floppy" in her father's arms and was rushed to hospital that the lithium battery was discovered.
North Hampshire coroner Andrew Bradley told the inquest that the 2-cm round object had eroded through the toddler's oesophagus and triggered a "catastrophic" bleed.
Mr Bradley said the case was a "timely reminder" of how button batteries should be avoided in homes with small children.
"They are immediately attractive objects to babies who are likely to pick them up and put them in their mouth," he explained. "With Francesca, it's quite apparent that's exactly what she did before swallowing it.
"It's a matter of great sadness, I cannot say anything more than that.
"We need to be aware of these things and be aware of the button batteries and the dangers they bring."
Mr Asan, who told the hearing that he felt he "hadn't done enough", agreed, urging parents: "If you don't use the batteries straight away then don't keep them in the house.
"They are dangerous. We have a very busy house with many kids but it is important to make sure batteries cannot be accessed by them.
"I didn't want my kids to get hold of them so I put them in a box in my drawers as it's not easy to access for kids.
"She had opened the packet as they were previously unopened. Apparently I didn't do enough."
After Mr Bradley returned a verdict of misadventure, Mr Asan spoke about his beloved daughter outside the court.
"Francesca had a very strong will and was a very strong character," the grieving father said.
"As soon as you met her you knew she left a very big imprint on the world and had so much life, more than people who live a lifetime.
"She was a full grown-up princess, she had a big heart."