Federal safety officials are warning against using infant rockers for sleep, citing at least 14 deaths linked to products made by Fisher-Price and another by Kids2.
At least 13 reported deaths between 2009 and 2021 involved Fisher-Price Infant-to-Toddler Rockers and Newborn-to-Toddler Rockers, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Fisher-Price said on Tuesday. Fisher-Price has sold more than 17 million of the rockers worldwide since the 1990s.
A separate release by the CPSC and Kids2 cited at least one reported death in 2019 of an infant in a Bright Starts Rocker. Kids2 has sold more than 1.8 million rockers worldwide since 2012.
Parents and caregivers should never use inclined products, including rockers, gliders, soothers and swings, for infant sleep and should never leave babies in the products unattended or with bedding material due to the risk of suffocation, the agency and companies stated.
Consumer advocates echoed this advice.
"Companies should not market or depict infant products such as rockers, gliders and inclined products as a way to get babies to sleep or as sleep products since they are not safe for infant sleep," Dev Gowda, assistant director of Kids In Danger, said in a statement.
The CPSC recently finalized a rule that goes into effect later this month, or June 22, requiring infant sleep products to have a sleep surface angle of 10 degrees or less.
A House committee found llast year that Fisher-Price ignored warnings about its Rock 'n Play inclined sleepers, which were on the market for around 10 years before being recalled in 2019 and which were linked to more than 30 infant deaths.
CPSC Commissioner Richard Trumka called on Congress to change the rules to allow the agency to issue its warnings more quickly.
"Just three years ago, this agency oversaw the recall of the Fisher-Price Rock 'n Play after a staggering number of infant deaths. Tragically, we now grieve 13 more infant deaths in Fisher Price Rockers," Trumka said in a statement.
When the safety commission becomes aware of a pattern of death and injury tied to a product, it must first seek permission from the manufacturer before warning the public.
"Here, the gag rule delayed our message to the public by two months," Trumka said ,adding that "Even with cooperation from Fisher-Price, we fought an uphill battle to release this information to warn parents and caregivers."
The CPSC offers the following safety tips for parents and caregivers:
First published on June 14, 2022 / 3:46 PM
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