On one summer day in 1984, Danny went down for a nap. When his mother came back to check on him, she found him hanging outside his crib by his shirt, which had become entangled on the corner post extension of his crib. Danny had been strangled, and the injuries he sustained that day eventually led to his death.
This post is dedicated to Danny – to highlight crib-related safety issues and to honor his family’s decades-long fight to protect other families from this hazard. Initially, Danny’s family didn’t realize that so many other families had suffered similar tragedies. After looking into the issue, however, they discovered that cribs caused approximately 100 deaths a year. Shocked, saddened, and also motivated by the magnitude of this issue, Danny’s family created the Danny Foundation in 1986.
The Danny Foundation spent two decades educating the public about crib dangers and working to eliminate the millions of unsafe cribs that remained in circulation. Today, KID carries on the legacy of the Danny Foundation by continuing to advocate for crib safety at all levels of product safety system.
When it comes to crib safety, here’s what you need to know:
- Use a crib manufactured AFTER June 28th, 2011, when new federal safety standards went into effect. According to the CPSC, these standards: “Prohibit the manufacture or sale of traditional drop-side rail cribs, strengthen crib slats and mattress supports, improve the quality of hardware and require more rigorous testing.”
- Read and follow all instructions for assembly, use, and care of the crib. If your crib breaks or hardware becomes loose or goes missing, stop using that crib and contact the manufacturer. Remove all soft bedding (such as crib bumper pads, blankets, or pillows) and keep cords or ribbons (such as on window blinds or baby monitors) at least 3 feet away from the crib area. Better yet, eliminate cords that can’t be hidden behind dressers or other items from your baby’s room. #GoCordless
- Register your crib with the manufacturer using the registration card or online form so that you are alerted if your crib is recalled. In the past, cribs have been recalled for hazards including non-compliance with safety standards, risk of falling, and risk of suffocation or strangulation, among others. Registering your crib ensures that you will be alerted to these hazards and can take steps to prevent injury or death. Learn more and find the link to the online form here.
- For a comprehensive guide to crib safety, visit our product hazard page on cribs.
KID is continuing to pursue safer crib designs. In the fall of 2016, our team of student engineers at the University of Michigan began work on a semester-long project through our TEST program to develop a crib design that addresses hazard patterns seen at SaferProducts.gov or other injury data. Cribs are the one product where a child is intended to be left alone – they must meet the highest level of safety.