Comfort blankets withdrawn while Halifax toddler scare investigated

Toddler Harry Lucks, 18 months old, of Mixenden, Halifax, who was nearly strangled when a cotton strands worked loose from his baby blanket, with his parents Gerrod Lucks and Faye Milner.
Toddler Harry Lucks, 18 months old, of Mixenden, Halifax, who was nearly strangled when a cotton strands worked loose from his baby blanket, with his parents Gerrod Lucks and Faye Milner.

A home goods chain of stores has withdrawn a baby comfort blanket after cotton strands from one worked loose and wrapped themselves round the neck of a Halifax toddler, threatening to strangle him.

Eighteen-month-old Harry Lucks, of Mixenden, was heard to be in distress through his baby monitor by his parents Gerrod Lucks and Faye Milner at 9.10am last Wednesday, October 4. They investigated to find strands from one of his favourite TJM Snuggz comfort blankets had become wrapped tightly around his neck during the night.

Toddler Harry Lucks, 18 months old, of Mixenden, Halifax, who was nearly strangled when a cotton strands worked loose from his baby blanket and wrapped around his neck

Toddler Harry Lucks, 18 months old, of Mixenden, Halifax, who was nearly strangled when a cotton strands worked loose from his baby blanket and wrapped around his neck

They bought the comfort blanket at the branch of Home Bargains at Crossgates, Leeds, where the family, including Harry’s big sister Chelsea, who is eight, lived until moving to Halifax in July.

Gerrod said: “Harry has two of the comforters, one which he has had since birth and a second one we bought when he was around six months old.

“The more recent one is the one with the problem. We heard him through the baby monitor and when we went to him he was on his knees. He stopped screaming - and screaming is out of character for him, we knew something was definitely wrong.

“He didn’t have hold of his snuggle, but it came towards us with him. Faye said his neck was bright red, I saw the cotton and managed to get my fingers in and snap it. You could see it had come from inside the blanket,” he said.

Harry’s parents rang the NHS Direct line for advice and got their son checked out at Calderdale Royal Hospital’s accident and emergency department and he was given the all-clear. They also consulted their family doctor afterwards and the mark around Harry’s neck faded after a few days.

“We are concerned to warn people that this has happened,” said Gerrod, who said the blanket tags said they were suitable for children from birth.

Gerrod and Faye notified the store about the issue with the blanket and Home Bargains said it was investigating the case.

A spokesperson for Home Bargains said: “We are fully aware of the incident and are conducting an investigation with our supplier. As a precaution, we have withdrawn the product from sale until our investigation has been completed.”