The American Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued a warning against the use of prone baby sleepers after studies and recollections revealed that the deaths of 73 infants have been linked to popular products.
Pediatricians recommend that babies sleep flat on their backs, and studies, lawsuits and research have found that a disproportionate number of infants have died while sleeping in basins that hold them at an angle.
Research suggests that sleeping on a slope increases the risk that babies will roll over and suffocate to death.
As a result, Fisher-Price remembered the entire Rock & # 39; s Play Sleeper line in April after a Consumer Reports investigation linked the product to at least 32 infant deaths.
Earlier this week, New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand asked officials to recall all similar designed products, and last month a University of Arkansas study confirmed that sleeping would make it easier for babies to roll over and suffocate.
CPSC has stopped reminding the oblique fireplaces, but now warns all Americans that they are all unsafe to use, even though manufacturers have not recalled the products.
But that was by no means the only one.
In August, Eddie Bauer and Disney both remembered their similar sleepers, and corresponded to approximately 24,000 inclined bassinets.
CPSC now recommends that parents and caretakers stop using any sleeper that allows a baby to lie at an angle greater than 10 degrees.
Products have been around – and popular – for a decade now, enjoying a reputation for soothing to infants since Fisher-Price introduced the first novel, Angled Sleeper on the Market.
Not only proved unsafe, but a Washington Post investigation revealed that Fisher-Price never tested the sleeper's safety before marketing millions of the products.
The Rock & # 39; s Play Sleeper has been at the center of class action lawsuits and on the pages of court documents, The Washington Post found evidence that the product did not receive clinical evaluation until eight years after its introduction in 2009.
And the invention took precedence changes in security codes that would have required it to be flat, not at the once unique of the sleeper, but ultimately fatal.
The Consumer Product Safety Standards are in place to protect vulnerable people from bringing home things that can fail or worse, harm them.
And no consumer is more at risk than a baby.
Yet another hugely popular product, designed for infants who not only slipped through the cracks, but flew off the shelves.
Fisher-Price, the almost monolithic baby product arm of toy giant Mattel, sold 4.7 million Rock & # 39; n Play Sleepers.
An engineer there came up with the idea of a reclining sleeper, something no other company made, and it sailed into production in 2009.
Every other baby sleeper at that time was flat.
And that's how they should be, according to the March of Dimes & # 39; s Safe Sleeping Recommendations.
To sleep safely and minimize the risk of the dreaded sudden infant death syndrome (crib death) or suffocation, infants should be placed flat on their backs on a firm flat surface, typically in a basin with side walls or a cot with railings.
But the angle of sleeping, Fisher-Price's engineers thought, would help babies sleep and sleep more easily.
It was a revelation, it was a hit, and then it was fatal.
An article on consumer reports earlier this year called the sleepers, who allowed babies to roll over to sleep, sometimes deadly, and called for them to be recalled.
12. April the products were recalled – a decade after they were first marketed.
At least two class action lawsuits have been filed against Mattel, who owns Fisher-Price, over infant injuries and sleeping-related deaths.
The discs reveal the slim testing that Fisher-Price – who was unable to comment on the disc at the time of publication – was performed on Rock & # 39; n Play.
Just one year before the product hit shelves and e-commerce stores, the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act was enacted, creating stricter test laws related to infant and toddler products.
Since 2013, the code has required that cradle swings have a slope of 10 degrees or less – one-third of the angle Rock & # 39; n Play has.
In 2009, no angle was mentioned in the security code, probably because angled sleepers did not exist until Rock & # 39; n Play was invented.
Despite misunderstandings to the contrary, the Consumer Product Safety Commission does not test every product until it comes on the market.
Fisher-Price did not have a medical expert to evaluate its product, and the design was in conflict with the American Academy of Pediatrics & # 39; s recommendations for safe sleep.
According to the Washington Post's review of court documents, the industrial designer who came up with the idea of Rock & # 39; n Play Sleeper, Linda Chapman, said that she had originally worked on the memory her advice her pediatrician had given her about her son years earlier when he had been an infant who had relapses.
In a deposition, she said that her doctor had suggested putting a pillow under the baby's head to raise it to help with his reflux.
During product testing in 2009, Fisher-Price worked with a family physician, Dr. Gary Deegear, but not a pediatrician.
During the lawsuit, the company continued to cite information related to babies with gastric problems, including guidelines cited by a 2001 North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition newsletter, the Post reported.
And even if we assumed that the sleeper was being tested to federal standards, it would not have had anything to say. Nothing in the code of the day mentioned the necessity of flat sleeping surfaces.
Now, the US CPSC hopes to ensure that no parents leave these misunderstood basinettes to the safety of their babies.