4 Million Baby Bumbo Seats Recalled Following Reports of Skull Fractures, Falls

Another 4 million Baby Bumbo Seats are being recalled following reports of skull fractures and falls, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) just announced.

The Baby Bumbo Seats were manufactured in South Africa by Bumbo International Trust, of South Africa and were sold by Sears, Target, Toys R Us (including Babies R Us), USA Babies, Walmart, and various other toy and children’s stores nationwide, and various online sellers, from August 2003 through August 2012. The recalled Bumbo seats sell for between $30 and $50.

In October 2007, 1 million Bumbo seats were recalled to provide additional warnings against use on raised surfaces. That recall notice can be accessed on the CPSC web site. Babies can maneuver out of, or fall from, the recalled Baby Bumbo Seat, which poses a risk of serious injuries. The Commission and Bumbo International are aware of at least 50 incidents since the October 2007 recall.

Babies had fallen from Bumbo Seat while being used on a raised surface; 19 incidents involved skull fractures. Since, the CPSC and Bumbo International have become aware of 34 post-recall reports of infants who fell out, or maneuvered out, of a Bumbo Seat used on the floor or at an unknown elevation. This resulted in at least two reports of skull fractures; the other injuries involved bumps, bruises, and minor injuries.

The bottom of the Bumbo seat is round, flat and 15 inches in diameter. The seat is constructed of a single piece of molded foam, comes in various colors, and has leg holes; the seat back wraps completely around the child. The front of the seat bears the word “Bumbo” in raised lettering, as well as an image of an elephant. The bottom of the seat bears: “Manufactured by Bumbo South Africa Material: Polyurethane World Patent No. PCT: ZA/1999/00030.” The back of the seat bears several warnings. Seats manufactured since 2008 bear an additional label on the front, warning against use on raised surfaces.

Consumers in possession of the recalled Baby Bumbo Seats are urged to cease using them until they install a repair kit, which can be obtained from the manufacturer, said Reuters. The free repair kit includes a restraint belt with a warning label, installation instructions, safe use instructions, and a new warning sticker; the belt should always be used when a child is in the seat. Even with the belt, the seat should never be used on a raised surface. Consumers should immediately stop using Bumbo seat covers that interfere with belt installation and use. A video demonstrating proper installation of the restraint belt and proper use of the Bumbo seat can be accessed at www.BumboUSA.com. The free repair kit can be ordered from this web site or by calling 1.866.898.4999 between 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Central Time (CT), Monday – Thursday and 8:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., CT, Friday. Bumbo Seats should not be returned to retailers as they are unable to provide the repair kit.

We previously wrote that consumer groups sought a recall of Baby Bumbo Seats and asked the CPSC to become involved. The CPSC acknowledged that Baby Bumbo Seats are associated with safety problems and issued a typical warning in November concerning the product’s risks; however, safety advocates feel the Commission should have done more.

As we’ve written, the recall mandated new warnings be placed on the Baby Bumbo Seat to deter elevated use of the product; however, since the prior recall, the CPSC and Bumbo International learned that, at that time, 17 infants, ages 3-10 months, suffered skull fractures. These incidents and other injuries involved the recalled Bumbo Seats and Bumbo Seats sold after the recall with the additional on-product warnings. Also, CPSC and Bumbo International stated that they were then aware of an additional 50 reports of infants falling or maneuvering out of Baby Bumbo Seats used on the floor, but at unknown elevations. This included two skull fractures and one concussion. At the time of the 2007 recall, CPSC was aware of 28 falls with three skull fractures. CPSC and Bumbo International were later aware of at least 46 falls from took place before the 2007 recall, resulting in 14 skull fractures, two concussions, and one broken limb.

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