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State ban issued after six-year-old schoolgirl nearly strangled to death by hat cord.

A six-year-old girl suffered neck injuries and was nearly strangled to death by her hat cord after it got caught in play equipment.

The Adelaide schoolgirl’s near-fatal accident, along with a similar incident involving another primary school student, has prompted a ban on hats or jumpers with cords across South Australian public schools.

Marley Oster was sliding down a spiral slide at her school’s playground last Thursday when her new school hat got caught and began to strangle her, Nine News reports.

Thankfully, eight-year-old Madison Fleming was at the top of the slide and came down to help, managing to release the hat’s safety clip.

“She’s got horrific scars across her neck,” Marley’s mother Gail Oster told Nine News.

“She’s been having nightmares since it happened.”

Marley was left with neck injuries. (Image via Nine News.)

As terrifying as the incident was for the little girl, Mrs Oster was told by doctors that her daughter's windpipe was less than a minute away from being crushed.

Also last week, Alexandra Johnson, an eight-year-old East Adelaide School student was "choked" by her hat cord and left hanging from a rope bridge until she was rescued by a teacher, The Advertiser reports.

"I accidentally let go and my hat got caught on the black rope and it choked my throat,” Alexandra told the newspaper.

Gail Oster is concerned about the safety of the hats. (Image via Nine News.)
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The girl's friends tried to help, but it was a teacher who was able to free her.

"I’ve still got a big mark around my neck," Alexandra said.

In both instances, the hat cord's safety clips should have released under moderate pressure, but failed.

The two accidents have prompted SA’s Department for Education and Child Development to issue a Hazard Alert for cords.

A hat similar to the one Marley was wearing. (Image via iStock.)

It's a warning to all parents and primary school and preschool teachers to ensure students don’t wear adjustable cords on their hats or hooded tops.

"Ensure hats and clothing do not have chin straps, cords, drawstrings, toggles and hooded clothing has no draw strings," the alert read.

Education Minister Susan Close said the cords would be removed from the clothing items, but the government would determine how future clothing uniforms might not include them at all.

"In the first instance we'll just get rid of cords, they're recognised as a danger and we'll determine what to do with our supplier and our parent groups," she said.

According to spokespeople from Victoria's and New South Wales’s education departments, they do not have plans to ban the corded items.

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