Cribs and bassinets should be designed as a safe sleeping area for infants, babies and toddlers. Most cribs are manufactured to be safe, however, some are defective due to unsafe design or manufacturing or improper setup. Follow the written directions for assembling the crib, even if it seems really easy to put together. A crucial step that is accidentally left out could be an important safety feature that you might not be aware of. Always check for recalls on any baby products you buy, especially if you purchase them used.
Crib Dangers For Babies
- Drop-side Cribs — A drop-side crib features a movable side piece that can be raised or lowered to make it easier to get a baby in and out. As of June 2011, dangerous drop-side cribs are no longer sold to U.S. consumers. Starting in 2013, cribs used in hotels and childcare centers must be fixed-side cribs. Drop-side cribs are dangerous because babies can become trapped between the mattress and the movable side, causing them to suffocate or break their neck.
- Entrapment – This is a common hazard for babies, especially newborns and even more so for premature babies. When you, as a soon-to-be parent, select a new crib for your baby, it is hard to imagine how tiny your baby will be. The width of the space between the slats (the vertical bars on the sides of the crib that are supposed to keep the baby from falling out) is probably not an area new parents even consider when deciding which crib to buy. But you should be aware that slats which are too far apart can be very dangerous for your baby. If the slats are too far apart, your baby could slip through the slats and fall to the ground or a tiny leg or arm could slide though and become entangled. Babies’ bones and limbs are fragile; it doesn’t take much to cause pain and injuries can be severe.
- Suffocation – Be careful of the bedding you put in your baby’s crib. While you want it to be soft and comfortable, it needs to fit tightly so that your baby cannot get under it and then accidentally suffocate. Also, be aware of bumper pads that go around the inside of the crib and are supposed to protect the baby from hitting the hard wooden slats. The bumper pads should be firm and tight against the slats so that if your baby rolls into the pads, she will not be pressed into the pad and unable to breathe.
- Falling Out – Make sure the mattress is low enough that your baby cannot fall out, over the top rails. Even before your baby can stand up, she could be at risk of falling from rolling or leaning over the edge.
- Strangulation – Look for a baby bed designed without decorative posts on the four corners. The problem with posts is that blankets or clothing can become looped around the post and then around the baby’s neck and cut off his air supply.
Check with the Consumer Product Safety Commission for a current list of recalled cribs.
Manufacturers And Sellers Of Unsafe Cribs Are Responsible
Unsafe cribs fall under the legal category of product liability. This area of law deals with the legal responsibility of manufacturers, sellers and others who must create a safe product and warn consumers of existing hazards that might exist with their products. If a product does not meet the safety guidelines required by our government, then the companies or people associated with the dangerous product may be held legally responsible. The defendant in a product liability case is not necessarily one person or company. It may be the designer/developer, manufacturer, supplier, distributor, marketer/advertiser, seller or repairer.
If your baby has been hurt due to an unsafe crib, contact the defective crib lawyers at Carr & Carr Attorneys today. Our team of caring attorneys helps families of injured children across the United States. Let the defective product attorneys at Carr & Carr take care of the legal issues while you and your family focus on getting your life put back together. And remember, by taking legal action you may be protecting other children from unnecessary suffering and helping make cribs safer in the future.
Product liability is a complicated area of law, especially when dealing with children’s products. You need to work with a law firm that has successfully represented families of children who have been hurt by dangerous products. Carr & Carr has helped families get the compensation they deserve after a child’s injury. Our offices are located in Oklahoma City, Tulsa and Springdale in Northwest Arkansas and we can help you no matter where you live or where the injury occurred.