Today, KID released Seeking Safety: 2019 Children’s Product Recalls, our annual report on children’s products recalled by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). According to the report, 2019 saw the largest number of children’s deaths reported prior to recall in the 19 years KID has been analyzing recall data, with 38 deaths associated with the recalled children’s products.
Thirty-seven of the deaths reported from 2019 recalls were due to infant inclined sleepers, specifically the Fisher-Price Rock ‘n Play and Kids II rocking sleeper. This number is troubling as many infant inclined sleepers still remain on the market. A recent Consumer Reports study found that the number of infant deaths from inclined sleepers is much higher than reported at the time of the recalls. Since the start of 2020, five more infant inclined sleepers have been recalled. Policymakers must ban and recall all infant inclined sleepers since studies have shown that inclined sleepers are not safe for infant sleep.
Additional findings of the report include:
- Recalls of unstable furniture spiked. In 2018, no furniture recalls were reported for a tip-over hazard. In 2019, six unstable furniture items were recalled, and one of those items was associated with the death of a child. A child is sent to the emergency department every 37 minutes due to a tip-over hazard, and one child dies every 11 days.
- CPSC social media usage remains low. In 2019, despite the media attention CPSC’s social media accounts received for their creative approach to safety information, the CPSC posted only about half (52%) of recalls on Facebook, 59% on Twitter, and a mere 5% on Instagram.
- The product with the highest number of units recalled was Contigo’s Kids Cleanable Water Bottle. This product had 5.7 million units recalled after it was found that the mouthpiece could detach and cause a choking hazard. The company offered replacement lids to customers who had purchased the water bottles, but in February 2020, the replacement lids were also recalled for a choking hazard.
KID urges policymakers to pass the STURDY Act, which would create mandatory safety standards for furniture tip-overs. The STURDY Act passed the U.S. House in a bipartisan vote last year and is currently in the Senate with cosponsors from both sides of the aisle. KID also urges the Senate to pass the Safe Sleep Act of 2019 which would ban infant inclined sleep products. The U.S. House passed a similar bill last year with a bipartisan vote.
Take a look at our press release, which includes quotes from Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (IL-9), Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul, Lisa Siefert of Shane’s Foundation and Parents Against Tip-overs, Illinois PIRG, and Illinois Action for Children.
KID calls on the CPSC to do more to hold manufacturers accountable for timely and effective recalls. KID recommends that parents check SaferProducts.gov for recalls and injury reports and sign up for safety updates at KidsInDanger.org. In addition, parents should report problems with children’s products to the manufacturer and to CPSC at SaferProducts.gov.