CPSC issues official baby sling warning; also update on more Cadmium jewelry

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a warning today about using slings with babies under four months old. The Commission wants parents to know the right way to position a baby in the sling.

This press release has a drawings of unsafe and then also safe positions for sling users.

This is from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s blog:

“The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is warning parents and caregivers to use extra caution when carrying infants younger than 4 months old in slings and make sure that an infant’s face is visible to baby wearers at all times.”

“When researching incident reports of sling use for the past 20 years, CPSC identified at least 14 babies who died since 1998 inside sling-style infant carriers. Three of those deaths were in 2009.”

“In the first few months of life, babies cannot control their heads because of weak neck muscles. When they are placed with their faces below the rim of a sling, they are not able to lift their heads to breathe. This can lead to two hazardous situations.”

“First, one particular risk occurs when the baby’s head is turned toward the adult. An infant’s nose and mouth can be pressed against the carrier and become blocked, preventing the baby from breathing. Suffocation can happen quickly, within a minute or two.”

“Second, when a baby lies in a sling, the fabric can push the baby’s head forward to its chest. Infants can’t lift their heads and free themselves to breathe. This curled, chin-to-chest position can partially restrict a baby’s airways, causing a baby to lose consciousness. The baby cannot cry out for help.”

So please moms read the info and make sure your baby is positioned correctly to avoid suffocation. Also share this blog with your mom friends so they’ll know too!

Also new from The Consumer Product Safety Commission: more jewelry with deadly Cadmium in it.

If you bought Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer jewelry you need to compare it with these photos on the CPSC’s site. It should be thrown away immediately if it matches.

21 comments Add your comment

Lori

March 12th, 2010
3:04 pm

It’s astonishing to me that we have to actually tell people to make sure their baby’s face isn’t covered so they don’t suffocate. Duh!!

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

March 12th, 2010
3:15 pm

You know what drives me crazy is when people put blankets completely over the top of their baby carrier!! and cover their entire bodies and face!!! duh!!

Becky

March 12th, 2010
4:01 pm

@Lori..Too funny..There are a lot of things that people shouldn’t have to be told not to do that amaze me..Wasn’t it Tiger that said a couple of topics ago that he was going to get a hot cup of coffee and spill it? Or Wayne..

HB

March 12th, 2010
8:21 pm

Ok, not to defend stupidity, but the McD’s case has been mentioned a few times lately, so I feel I have to say something. McD’s was serving their coffee 20 degrees hotter than most restaurants, putting it at a temperature that could quickly cause 3rd degree burns. They knew that and actually had settled other cases where customers were severely burned. The woman who sued suffered 3rd degree burns and required several sugeries. Once-skeptical jury members who eventually sided against McD’s said they were shocked at the amount of evidence showing how dangerous the coffee temp was and how much McD’s knew about the problem years before. They also said they awarded huge damages (later lowered by a judge) because they felt the punishment had to be large enough to get the company to change its business practices. So are there crazy frivolous lawsuits? Sure. Are all of the ones that sound insane just a money grab? No. And you better believe corporations work hard to keep the ones that at a glance appear ludicrous in the press because they fuel sympathy for the companies and create a backlash against consumer protection laws that could cost them $.

Kyle

March 12th, 2010
11:10 pm

The CPSC issued a warning, and it was in reference to a few tragic accidents that occured over the past two decades. Those slings were quickly recalled and taken off the market.

As a retailer of baby carriers, slings and wraps, and a father who
uses many different types at home, I know first hand how important the
safety of these products is. I also know it is a top priority of all
the manufactures in the industry, and an enormous amount of time is
spent ensuring it stays that way.

Most baby carrier products come with precise instructions, as well as
an 800 support number if mothers/fathers have any questions. If worn
correctly, 99% of the baby carriers, slings and wraps on the market
are completely safe to use.

We welcome future regulation of the industry to ensure the slings, carriers and wraps being produced are safe for our family, friends, clients and the public to use.

Kyle K
Founder of http://www.organicbabycarriers

Fred

March 13th, 2010
1:47 am

Holy babypoop Kyle. If you are going to spam your blatantly commercial spamsite to avoid paying the advertizing charges the AJC has (which I’m sure you charge all the companys that advertize on YOUR OWN spamsite) at LEAST spam it correctly.

Personally I think you are a no good cheating scumbag for spamming your commercial website in order to steal free advertizing, but then hey, it’s the way things are done right? Wrong.

Theresa: I’m not too bright, (well bright enough to spot scumbags spamming websites for stolen advertizing, but other than that). What exactly IS a baby sling? Is it that thing that folks where that straps a baby to your chest while you do stuff rather than just hold a baby?

Tiffany

March 13th, 2010
8:12 am

If there is even a small chance of ANY baby being harmed from this…why would they continue to make this thing? It is because of the idiot parents out there that don’t read directions, ect. that innocent babies will be suffocated in this contraption. It needs to be taken off the market!

Leslie

March 13th, 2010
9:08 am

I agree about the McD’s thing. We studied the first big case extensively in a social psychology class and the cup literally disintegrated in the woman’s lap. McDs had been cited several times by the health department for serving coffee that was close to boiling, but they kept countering that any attempts to make them lower the temperatures would hurt their competitive business practices.

nurse&mother

March 13th, 2010
9:09 am

Sorry, HB, I will have to agree with others who say who the heck puts coffee in between their legs (especially while driving). I still feel like that person was awarded too much money for stupidity. It shouldn’t matter how how the coffee was. coffee is hot. period. People just sued because they saw dollar signs from a major money making corporation. I think the minimum amount that should have been awarded should be medical bills. And NO money for pain & suffering.

nurse&mother

March 13th, 2010
9:10 am

oops should have read how HOT the coffee was

HB

March 13th, 2010
10:12 am

Nurse&mother, if you really believe that most people should reasonably expect that coffee served by restaurants is nearly boiling and can cause 3rd degress, then fine, but I think that reasonable, intelligent people can also disagree with that.

As for money grubbing, I suggest you read more about the case. First, the woman was not driving. She was in the passenger seat of a parked car and placed the coffee between her knees on the seat to put cream/sugar in the coffee. She wanted to settle for $20,000 (hardly seems greedy seeing as she was severely burned, needed skin grafts, etc), but McD’s would only settle for $800. The jury determined there was $200,000 in compensatory damages for which McD’s was 80% at fault and awarded her $160,000. Based on the callousness of how McD’s treated her and how they had ignored the dangers of the coffee temp for years, they awarded punitive damamges (punishment) of $2.7 million. A judge later lowered that.

Now maybe the woman didn’t desrve to receive all the punitive funds herself and maybe $2.7 mil was too high (that’s why we have judges to check the jury — the system worked), but that doesn’t mean that McD’s didn’t deserve to have to pay significant punitive damamges (I think it ended up being around $600,000). Those large awards are meant to keep companies in line. Corporations can’t have a free pass to do wrong. You can’t throw them in jail. You can only make them pay, and juries take into consideration that too small of awards against giant corps won’t hurt them. The large awards are meant to make them take notice and change their ways.

Sling wearing mommy

March 13th, 2010
1:15 pm

I am due with my second child in a few weeks and I will use a sling again. I loved the sling with my first child and I would have been up a creek without it. Now it is unfortunate that children have died because of sling use but 14 children since 1998 is not a large percentage. There are other things like swings, bouncy seats, cribs and countless other devices that have caused infant death. To me, while important to know the information, it really has become another overly media hyped topic. Parents need to be informed about how to properly wear a baby and look into all types of baby wearing option.s

irisheyes

March 13th, 2010
3:51 pm

“Now it is unfortunate that children have died because of sling use but 14 children since 1998 is not a large percentage”

As a mom, I’m astonished at the coldness of that comment. Any death that could have been prevented is a tragedy. From what I’ve read, it seems that these parents were using the bag sling the way it was supposed to be used, and that’s where the problem is. It’s the bag slings that are dangerous.

Fred

March 13th, 2010
5:18 pm

Geez irisheyes, LIVING is dangerous. Call me cold too because 14 kids in 12 years isn’t an epidemic or cause for a ban. How many kids spontaneously combusted in that same 12 years? How many where hit by lightening or a meteorite? I mean just damn, you can’t protect against every little possibility and 14 deaths in 12 years just is NOT a number to go stupid over.

I STILL don’t know for sure what these sling thingies are, but if they are what I think they are, I didn’t feel comfortable using one. Yeah, I was Mr. mom for my soon to be 8 year old and as such she was with me all the time. I tried to use that front sling thing and then the one that cradles them to your chest with their arms and legs sticking out, but as I said I didn’t feel comfortable with them. It seemed to me too easy to make a mistake and crush her or turn too fast and bonk her big watermelon head on something because I wasn’t used to that extra 6-8 inches more of “chest” hanging out in front. i didn’t “wear a baby” I held mine. She wasn’t a bother or nuisance or impediment for something more important. What the heck is more important than my own child?

Tiffany

March 13th, 2010
6:17 pm

Uh, 14 children have died because of this device? That is 14 TOO MANY! Are you kidding me? Why don’t you just use a stroller or hold your baby in your own arms? Too hard for you?

irisheyes

March 13th, 2010
7:06 pm

Actually, Fred, I’ve never owned a sling. I’m not a “baby-wearer”, but a callous statement like “only 14 children” just chills me. No parent should EVER have to bury their child. If the slings are dangerous, they’re dangerous. My point was that it sounds like the parents were using them the way the instructions explained, and it’s the slings that are dangerous, not the parents actions.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

March 15th, 2010
9:06 am

I’m trying to decide what topic to use — new topic is coming. just thinking about what you guys would like the best.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

March 15th, 2010
9:44 am

Becky

March 15th, 2010
10:18 am

@Fred..I agree with you..Living is dangerous..I’m very sorry that these mothers had to bury their child, but life does go on..I have a nephew that is in a wheelchair because of a motorcycle wreck, but that doesn’t stop me from riding on a motorcycle..More children (most likely) have been killed in car wrecks than have died from these slings..Like sling wearing mommy said..Pay attention to what you put your child in..Yes, I know what it’s like to bury a baby, my nephew buried his 2 week old baby 8 years ago, it still hurts..

sling.lover

March 17th, 2010
3:23 pm

I loved using the sling for my first and I will be using it again along with almost everyone I know. Perhaps the government should have parents “tested exhaustively before they are allowed” to care for something so fragile and precious. I’m sure that would save more than 14 babies lives and limbs.

Misha Johnson

April 20th, 2010
4:00 pm

I think we need to make sure we take everything into account and proper perspective. People need to make sure their child is safe, we also need to take into account the fact that there are more deaths from stroller and crib accidents…..we all need to take personal responsibility for our actions and take care of our babies.

Misha Johnson
http://www.modmum.com