Products Liability Law Daily CPSC advises against use of inclined infant sleep products
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Friday, November 1, 2019

CPSC advises against use of inclined infant sleep products

By Colleen Kave, J.D.

Sleepers with an angle greater than 10 degrees do not provide a safe sleep environment.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) published a warning yesterday urging parents and caregivers to refrain from using inclined sleep products for infants. Citing a new study, the agency explained that inclined sleepers with higher angles do not provide a safe sleep environment for babies. Previously, CPSC has recalled inclined sleepers from Fisher Price (Recall Nos. 19-105 and 19-151), Kids II (Recall No. 19-112), and Dorel Juvenile Group USA (19-177) (CPSC News Release, No. 20-016, October 31, 2019).

Product evaluation. Reports received by CPSC indicate that 1,108 incidents involving infant inclined sleep products, including 73 infant fatalities, occurred between January 2005 and June 2019. The agency enlisted Erin Mannen, Ph.D., a mechanical engineer specializing in biomechanics at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, to evaluate the design of inclined sleep products. Dr. Mannen studied infants’ muscle movements and oxygen saturation while they were in various products and positions, such as a flat crib, an inclined crib, and several inclined sleep products, and found that none of the inclined sleep products tested is safe for infant sleep. Conversely, Dr. Mannen’s report concluded that products with inclines of 10 degrees or less, with flat and rigid surfaces, are likely safe for infant sleep. Dr. Mannen’s study also confirmed that soft and plush-like sleep surfaces pose dangers to infants.

Agency recommendations. In light of the hazards inherent in inclined infant sleep products, CPSC continues to stress the following safety guidelines:

  • Stop using infant sleep products with inclined seat backs of more than 10 degrees.
  • Parents and caregivers should not use infant car seats, bouncers, and other infant inclined products for sleep, and should follow manufacturer instructions.
  • The best place for a baby to sleep is on a firm, flat surface in a crib, bassinet, or play yard.
  • Parents and caregivers should never add blankets, pillows or other items to an infant’s sleeping environment.
  • Babies should always be placed to sleep on their backs.
  • Check www.cpsc.gov often to see if nursery products have been recalled, and promptly follow the recall instructions to receive a refund, replacement, or repair.

MainStory: TopStory BabyProductsNews

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