The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (“CPSC”) announced Monday that nearly 1.2 million U.S. cribs are to be recalled following four infant suffocations. The cribs are manufactured by Stork Craft Manufacturing and some carry the Fisher Price logo. The at-risk cribs were manufactured and distributed between January 1993 and October 2009 and were sold at retailers such as Sears and Wal-Mart. The recall reportedly involved drop-side cribs which are equipped with a sliding side that allows parents to more easily use the cribs. These drop sides have shown a propensity to detach from the crib causing infants to get stuck between the crib and the mattress. The CPSC has reported at least four infant fatalities arising out of the use of the cribs.
The Stork Craft cribs reportedly have a hardware deficiency which can break or deform after use. When the part malfunctions the crib’s sliding side becomes detached from the crib creating a dangerous gap where an infant can become trapped. The cribs have also had problems related to assembly mistakes by crib owners. When the drop side is installed upside down it is susceptible to malfunction. Stork Craft has made a repair kit available which converts the drop side into a permanently static crib. The CPSC is urging parents to stop using the cribs immediately unless the drop side repair kit has been installed.
Manufacturers in Illinois and throughout the United States are required to produce safe products or otherwise provide adequate warning for unsafe features. If you have any questions about the safety of dropside cribs or would like to speak to an attorney, please click here.