BABIES could be at risk of being strangled by an accessory attached to their dummies, parents have been warned.

The item - called a “baby dummy holder” - could potentially wrap around an infant’s neck causing them to suffocate and die.

An investigation found that a number of products sold online feature “excessively long” chords which could be deadly.

Several of the items investigated by West Sussex trading standards also had beads which shattered easily and were a potential choking hazard.

West Sussex Trading Standards discovered that nine different products bought from online marketplace sites all failed to pass safety tests.

All of the items - which are believed to come from China - are being removed from sale as a result of the investigation.

West Sussex Trading Standards team manager Peter Aston said: “Using any one of these holders could have had fatal consequences and as a result, we are taking this investigation incredibly seriously.

“The marketplace sites are de-listing the products and enquiries are continuing to establish if the sellers have a physical presence in the UK.

“Where this is the case, a formal investigation will take place.

“However, in a number of cases it appears the product is coming straight from China.

“In this situation, while the product can be de-listed by the market place site, liability falls with the Chinese manufacturer rather than the market place site.

“As this is clearly a national issue, we are sharing our findings with the Office for Product Safety and Standards for their consideration.”

The safety regulations enforced by West Sussex Trading Standards state that the chords of “baby dummy holders” should not be longer than 220mm.

The holders which failed the organisation’s safety tests had chords measuring up to 325mm long, almost 150 per cent of the limit.

This posed a “serious strangulation risk”, the trading standards team said.

Deborah Urquhart, West Sussex County Council’s cabinet member for environment, said: “These are worrying results and the consequences of using any one of these holders could have been devastating.

“I would urge residents to only buy from trusted, recognised brands when purchasing products online.”

Anyone who thinks they have purchased an unsafe product ir urged to contact Trading Standards at or via Citizens Advice on 03454 04 05 06.

The trading standards officers are responsible for making sure goods available to people in West Sussex are made to proper safety standards.

Recent investigations include a raid on the garage of a man who was selling thousands of pounds worth of fake rock band merchandise.