WASHINGTON, D.C. – Consumer Reports today called for urgent action after the Consumer Product Safety Commission announced new recalls of two Fisher-Price products: the 4-in-1 Rock ‘n Glide Soother and the 2-in-1 Soothe ’n Play Glider. According to the CPSC, inclined gliders, soothers, rockers, and swings are not safe for infant sleep due to the risk of suffocation.
The recalls come as the 4-in-1 Rock ‘n Glide Soother has been tied to four infant fatalities, including the death of a 2-month-old baby girl reported to the CPSC’s public database by a state agency. According to the report, the baby was sleeping on February 1, 2020, when she “turned on her side and the cushion in the soother restricted her breathing,” causing her to suffocate.
William Wallace, manager of safety policy for Consumer Reports, said, “This is appalling. Fisher-Price kept selling inclined products that it marketed as a way to help get infants to sleep, even after it recalled the dangerous Rock ‘n Play Sleeper. Now we’ve learned four babies died in the span of just ten months in another product, causing unimaginable pain for their families. The behavior of Fisher-Price and its parent company Mattel yet again raises serious doubts about their commitment to safety.
“We’re glad these recalls are finally happening and people can get a full refund, but Fisher-Price has a lot of questions to answer. Why did they take so long to agree to these recalls – more than 18 months after Consumer Reports first called for a recall of the Rock ‘n Glide? Why did they leave these products on the market? When did they learn about these four infant deaths? Why didn’t they tell the public sooner?
“Anyone who owns one of the recalled products should take action right away and Fisher-Price should make it as easy as possible to do so. We urge every manufacturer to immediately recall all products marketed for infant sleep that don’t actually align with expert medical recommendations.”
This morning’s announcement comes two days after the CPSC voted in favor of a final rule that will establish new safeguards for infant sleep products, which Wallace said was “a critical move that will help people keep their babies safe.” Once it takes effect in mid-2022, the new rule will ensure that all infant products intended or marketed for sleep – such as the products recalled today – must comply with strong minimum safety standards to be allowed on the market.
On Monday, June 7, the House Oversight and Reform Committee will hold a hearing to discuss its investigation into the Fisher-Price Rock ‘n Play Sleeper and grave flaws in the U.S. consumer product safety system. The Rock ‘n Play was recalled in April 2019, following a CR investigation that revealed dozens of infant deaths were linked to the product and other inclined sleepers. Additionally, according to an examination of CPSC data and CR’s independent reporting, at least 23 deaths are associated with unregulated flat sleep products, including in-bed sleepers.
American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) safe sleep recommendations include that infants should sleep alone, on their back, on a firm, flat surface in their own safe sleeping area – be it a crib, bassinet, or play yard – with no extra bedding, to help avoid suffocation and other dangers. CR urges parents and caregivers to follow these evidence-based recommendations and discontinue the use of any product for infant sleep that does not align with them, including inclined sleepers, in-bed sleepers, and various other products covered by the CPSC’s new final rule.
To learn more about today’s recalls and the CPSC’s draft final rule for infant sleep products, read today’s Consumer Reports story.
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