Summer's legacy: Retailers vow to look at battery sales

MAJOR retailer Wesfarmers has promised it will investigate how it can improve button battery safety in its Target and Kmart stores.

Kidsafe Queensland CEO Susan Teerds made the announcement outside the Maroochydore courthouse where the inquest into Summer Steer's death from a button battery is being heard.


Ms Teerds said she had been working for years to bring about changes for button batteries, commonly found in many household appliances.

Summer Steer, 4, died after swallowing a button-sized battery.
Summer Steer, 4, died after swallowing a button-sized battery.

She said Wesfarmers had advised her late yesterday it would look at new initiatives including improved warning messages on the packaging of items containing button batteries.

"They will also look into the product packaging and how the battery compartments can be better secured," Ms Teerds said.

"They will also look at having the items placed higher on store shelves to minimise access by children."

Ms Teerds hoped the initiative taken by Wesfarmers would be followed by other major retailers.

"These initiatives need to be universally adopted and enhanced," she said.

"There will be a transition period, but these organisations should be congratulated for leading the way in retail responsibility.

Summer Steer's General Practitioner has been on the stand for most of the morning answering questions to the appointment weeks before her death.

Andrew Spall was asked to explain his notes in relation to Summer's appointment as well as the notes he prepared for the coroner on May.

Coroner John Hutton ordered a police officer to accompany Dr Spall back to his surgery to seize all notes in relation to the case.