A million <"http://www.yourlawyer.com/practice_areas/product_liability">Kolcraft play yards are expected to be recalled today, The Wall Street Journal is reporting. According to the report, the Kolcraft play yards have been implicated in incidents that injured 21 children.
The Kolcraft play yards at the center of the Journal report include the Kolcraft Travelinâ€™ Tot model, as well as dozens of others. The expected recall also includes play yards Kolcraft sold under other names, including Carterâ€™s, Sesame Street, Jeep, Contours, Care Bear and Eric Carle. The products were sold at stores including Babies R Us, Wal-Mart, Kmart, Sears and Target, from January 2000 through January 2009, retailing for between $50 and $160, the Journal said. Some of the Kolcraft play yards included changing tables or bassinets.
Kolcraft has reportedly received 347 reports of the side rail of the play yards collapsing. At least 21 of those incidents involved injuries to children, including a concussion, The Wall Street Journal said.
Some consumer advocacy are complaining that these play yards should have been recalled before the number of collapsing incidents reached more than 300.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) will be advising consumers to stop using the play yards, and contact Kolcraft for a replacement kit to fix the defect. But as the report points out, that’s the same remedy that was recommended in September 2007 when Kolcraft recalled play yards that had been implicated in the strangulation death of a child. What’s more, the Journal reports that some of the models included in the 2007 recall are also included in this latest action.
The Journal points out that since 2007, more than 7 million cribs, play yards and bassinets have been recalled. This disturbing trend has many consumer advocates calling for tougher standards and regulation of such products. According to The Wall Street Journal, a new product safety law passed last summer requires that the CPSC establish tougher rules for such products.
There is also some evidence that industry is starting to take calls for tougher standards more seriously. For instance, in March, we reported that major crib manufacturers have signed on to a proposal that would ban drop side cribs – one of the most commonly recalled children’s products – in the U.S. Proposed new rules would require that all four sides of the crib be rigidly attached to one another. That eliminates the moving parts that have broken loose and created entrapment hazards. A small portion of the top of a crib railing would be allowed to fold down, so that people who need it would still have easier access to the crib.
According to the Chicago Tribune, the proposal was approved in March at a meeting of ASTM International, a standards organization. The proposal now goes to a broader group of ASTM members for a vote.