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Over 2 Million Cribs Recalled Amid Safety Concerns

4:58 PM, Jun 24, 2010   |    comments
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WASHINGTON (WUSA/AP) -- Cari Myrha's daughter Sabrina was just nine months old when her crib came apart.

"She was clinging to the crib sheet kicking her legs and screaming bloody murder," Myrha says.

Sabrina was not injured, but 27 other children were after they fell or got caught in their fixed or drop side cribs.

"The drop side can disengage, create a gap where the baby can fall and get entrapped, says CPSC spokesperson Nychelle Fleming.

Her crib is now part of a massive voluntary recall to repair 2.2 million beds that are made by some of the biggest names in the business, names like Evenflo, Delta Enterprises Corp., Child Craft, Jardine Enterprises, LaJobiMillion Dollar Baby and Simmons Juvenile Products Inc.

"The safest place for your baby should be in a crib, and you wanna make sure that there are no hazards associated with it, says Fleming.

The cribs were sold between 2000 and 2009, most of them involved drop down sides.  But there is a fix.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission's Fleming says you place a guard, "directly over the top, and you'll hear that click."

You'll need to reach out to the manufacturer to get a free repair kid that immobilizes the drop side. 

Experts at Great Beginnings Baby Store offer some advice for parents looking for a new crib.

"Pick out a harder wood, birch, maple oak, ash, it holds up good over a period of time," says Joe Cluen.

And, before you buy a crib give it a shake.

Cluen says, "If the whole crib moves, that's a good indication that it's a very, very stable crib."

The CPSC is working on new mandatory standards that would ban drop side cribs, and require them to have stronger wood, hardware and other supports.

Cari Myrha hopes those new standards keep other children safe.

She says, "A lot of them don't know they have this potential hazard in their home.  I didn't."

Drop-sides have increasingly come under scrutiny, with several warnings from the CPSC in the last year that the cribs can be deadly.

CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum said, "Most of these recalled cribs have dangerous drop-sides, while the Delta crib can pose a danger to babies if the mattress support is installed incorrectly."

The recalls involved about:

  • 750,000 Jenny Lind drop-side cribs distributed by Evenflo Inc.
  • 747,000 Delta drop-side cribs. Delta is also urging parents to check all fixed and drop-side cribs that use wooden stabilizer bars to support the mattress. The company says the bars can be installed upside down, causing the mattress platform to collapse.

    CPSC spokesman Scott Wolfson said Delta "was not cooperative with providing the full number of units involved in the mattress support assembly problem."
  • 306,000 Bonavita, Babi Italia and ISSI drop-side cribs manufactured by LaJobi Inc.
  • 130,000 Jardine drop-side cribs imported by Toys R Us.
  • 156,000 Million Dollar Baby drop-side cribs.
  • 50,000 Simmons drop-side cribs.
  • 40,000 to 50,000 Child Craft brand stationary-side cribs and an unknown number of Child Craft brand drop-sides.  Child Craft ceased operations last summer and sold its name to Foundations Worldwide Inc., which did not manufacture or sell any of the recalled cribs but will offer rebates for some of them.

    The federal agency reports 9 million drop-side cribs have been recalled in the past five years.

    Drop-sides have been blamed in the deaths of at least 32 infants and toddlers since 2000.   The cribs are suspected in another 14 infant fatalities during that time.

    Congress is also concerned about the cribs. Legislation has been introduced by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., to outlaw the sale and manufacture of drop-sides. A similar bill has been introduced in the House by Democratic Rep. Joe Crowley, also of New York.

    Drop-side cribs have been around for decades, but consumer advocates say they are not as sturdy as those of the past.

    Older cribs had metal rods that guided the drop-side up and down. Many newer cribs have plastic tracking guides for the drop-side that critics say are more prone to breaking.

    The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association, which represents over 90 percent of the crib industry, urges parents not to use cribs with loose or missing parts.

    It also says consumers should not use a crib that is older than 10 years because it may not comply with current standards.

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