The death of a child has prompted yet another recall of <"http://www.yourlawyer.com/practice_areas/product_liability">dangerous drop side cribs. This time, Dorel Asia SRL, of Barbados is recalling 635,000 drop side cribs that put infants at risk of strangulation and suffocation.
The drop side hardware on these recalled cribs can fail causing the drop side to detach from the crib. When the drop side detaches it creates a space in which an infant or toddler can become entrapped and suffocate or strangle. In addition, the recalled cribs can pose a serious entrapment and strangulation hazard when a slat is damaged. This can occur while the crib is in use, in storage, being put together, taken apart or reassembled; or during shipping and handling.
According to the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC), one of these Dorel Asia drop side cribs has been implicated in the death of 6-month old child from Cedar Rapids, Iowa who became entrapped and strangled in a crib after the drop side hardware broke. The crib continued to be used after the parents tried to repair the drop side themselves.
There have also been reports of 31 drop side incidents. In six of those incidents, children were entrapped between the drop side and crib mattress. Three children suffered from bruises as a result of the entrapment. In addition, CPSC and Dorel Asia received reports of 36 incidents of slat breakage, including seven reports of bruises and scratches to children and two reports of entrapment that resulted in no injury.
The cribs involved in the recall were sold at K-Mart, Sears and Wal-Mart stores nationwide from January 2005 through December 2009 for between $120 and $700. A complete list of the drop side crib models included in this recall can be found here.
Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled cribs, find an alternative safe sleeping environment for your child, and contact Dorel Asia to receive a free replacement kit. Consumers should log on to www.dorel-asia.com to order the free replacement kit to prevent child entrapment in these cribs. The repair kits will be provided to owners within the next several weeks.
The CPSC is also reminding parents and caregivers not to use any crib with missing, broken, or loose parts. Make sure to tighten hardware from time to time to keep the crib sturdy. When using a drop-side crib, parents should check to make sure the drop side or any other moving part operates smoothly. Always check all sides and corners of the crib for disengagement. Disengagements can create a gap and entrap a child. In addition, do not try to repair any side of the crib, especially with duct tape, wire or rope.
Drop side cribs have been implicated in dozens of entrapment incidents. Like the incident involving the Dorel Asia crib, some have resulted in the death of a child. Last November, following a massive recall of Stork Craft drop side cribs that had been implicated in the suffocation deaths of four children, the head of the CPSC advised that parents and caregivers abandon drop side cribs. Inez Tenenbaum also admitted that her agencyâ€™s track record on crib safety hasnâ€™t exactly been stellar.
At the time, Tenenbaum said the CPSC would be proposing new mandatory crib regulations in the next few months, but said she did â€œnot think drop-sides will be a part of cribs in the future.â€