It is difficult to even think that one of the most important products for the babies can be potentially hazardous but these drop-side cribs have been subjected to questions and many deaths of babies in USA over the years. Although these drop-side cribs are developed to make it easier for the parents to put babies in and out of the cribs, they can also put the babies and infants at the risks.
Thus, as a consequence of the potential risks in the lives of the infants, the Consumer Products Safety Commission or CPSC issued a complete ban of these popular yet dangerous cribs in June 2011.
The Hazards of Drop-Side Cribs
The unique drop-down design allows one or both sides of the crib panel to glide up and down have dangers concealed that can lead to the strangulation or suffocation of the babies. The chief hazards involving the drop-side hardware that can break anytime and cause a gap to form between the crib and the mattress, hence, the crib where the baby may stuck or trapped. The same problems can happen when the crib parts will be missing or when parents are unable to assemble the cribs properly in spite of the warnings given by the CPSC to the parents not to use the cribs with broken or missing components.
Aside from this, drop-side cribs bought at garage sales or by online classified ads may have missing screws, bolts and the needed safety instructions or manual, which can contribute to the injury of the infant.
Recalls of Drop-Side Cribs
CPSC claims that there are more than 9 million crop-side cribs that were recalled since 2007 which includes the brand names Pottery Barn, Graco, Stock Craft, Basset Baby and many more. The defects in designs are the causes for recalls of the drop-side cribs. The Consumer Products Safety Commission through its Crib Information Center has sufficient information of the recall.
Under the product liability claims, the design defect happens when the manufacturer of the product develop a faulty design that could have been prevented by using an alternative design. Some defects may result to recalls of the cribs including the manufacturing defects or unintended defects that incurred when the product leaves from its intended design and the failure to give warnings or when the manufacturer was unable to give alerts users of the potential risks to the babies.
Drop-Side Crib Ban
The CPSC has agreed to ban the drop-side cribs basing from the potential serious injury and death to toddlers and babies. Under the new regulations, the federal authorities will have to:
- Discontinue the manufacture, sale and resale of the hazardous traditional drop-side cribs
- Make the crib hardware more durable and secure
- Produce mattress that supports stronger
- Develop safety testing more precise
These regulations are applicable to the present drop-side crib manufacturers, retail stores, and suppliers of these drop-side cribs which includes hospitals, motels, and daycare facilities. They also prohibit the re-sale of used drop-side cribs.
What are the alternatives parents can do?
Even though the drop-side cribs offer convenience to parents, there are other safer baby cribs available in the market.
If you want to reduce the potential danger of your drop-side crib, you can visit www.cpsc.gov or the official website of the manufacturer for particular instructions on getting a free repair kit. All the manufacturers who are producing the drop-side cribs ban are ordered to make free repair kits for the crib owners.
For parents who are interested in stopping the use of drop-side cribs, the following are useful alternatives you can do:
- Crib with a Sliding Panel. There are some manufacturers, such as Babee Tenda and Innovation Crib Designs, have developed cribs that has a sliding side panel as a way of getting the infants in and out comfortably and easily.
- Fixed-Rail Crib. These are traditional cribs made from manufacturers with varied features, stability, and functionality.
- Step Stool. A strong wooden step stool is placed in front of the crib that can help the parents reach their babies conveniently, particularly when the parents are shorter than the average height.
With these and other drop-side options, make sure to always check the manufacturers’ warning instructions before buying and using the crib for your child.