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What You Need to Know About the Inclined Sleeper Recall

by | Feb 11, 2020 | Catastrophic Injuries

If you own an inclined sleeper for your baby, you may be putting your child unnecessarily at risk. With dozens of deaths linked to the product, Consumer Reports and the Consumer Product Safety Commissioner recommend that parents and caregivers should immediately stop using any inclined sleeper devices.

Product Recall

When the Fisher-Price introduced its Rock ‘n Play inclined sleeper in 2009, it became a must-have item for parents. The product, with its 30-degree incline and padded sidewalls, promised a peaceful sleep for fussy infants. However, the design of the inclined sleeper went against the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) guidelines of allowing babies to sleep flat on their backs, on firm mattresses, free from any bedding or padding.

In April 2019, Consumer Reports  tied the Fisher-Price inclined sleeper to dozens of infant deaths, saying the device increased the risk of suffocation and strangulation. Fisher-Price recalled all 4.7 million of its Rock ‘n Play Sleepers. Shortly thereafter, the company Kids II also recalled 700,000 of its rocking inclined sleepers. 

Research Study

Most recently, in October 2019, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Consumer Reports, and the AAP commissioned an independent study on inclined sleepers. CPSC hired a University of Arkansas mechanical engineer specializing in biomechanics to lead the study and test the design of the sleepers. The research team concluded that none of the inclined sleep products that were tested are safe for infant sleep, as the sleepers drastically increased the risk of infant suffocation.

Researchers evaluated different models of inclined sleepers, most of the products featuring an incline of 30 degrees and design elements including rounded sleep surfaces and plush side padding. The researchers carefully monitored the movements and oxygen levels of infants while they sat in the inclined sleeper. They then compared those movements and levels with infants placed on a flat mattress (as per the AAP sleep recommendations). They found that when the babies in the inclined sleepers tried to roll over, they exerted 250% more abdominal muscle activity and their oxygen levels dropped twice as much. This suggests that when infants roll onto their stomachs on an inclined sleeper, they can exhaust themselves and ultimately suffocate before they can to reposition their heads to breathe. 

What Parents and Caregivers Should Do

Based on the sleeper study results, Consumer Reports and the Consumer Product Safety Commission proposed that inclined sleepers be eliminated from the market entirely. If you are a parent or a caregiver who owns one of these sleepers – you should stop using it immediately. Fisher-Price and Kids II are offering consumers a partial refund or voucher for the product. 

Parents and caregivers should also beware – the recalled inclined sleepers may still be sold on secondhand marketplaces such as eBay, Craigslist, Amazon, and Facebook Marketplace. By law, retailers (including those on the secondhand market) cannot sell recalled products. Additionally, even if the seller is not aware of the recall, the websites hosting their listings should be. But recalled products do still end up in the listings. 

Contact the Experienced Product Liability Litigators at Hudson King

If you have been injured by a defective or recalled product, you may be eligible for compensation. At Hudson King, our team of product liability attorneys has the experience and knowledge necessary to pursue the best possible results in your case. Contact us today at 229-396-5845 for a free case consultation.

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