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More Drop-Side Cribs Recalled; 20 Child Injuries, 3 Infant Deaths

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has announced yet another recall of drop-side cribs -- cribs that appear to be identical to defective drop-side cribs the same manufacturer was forced to recall in February 2010. The manufacturer is Generation 2 Worldwide of Dothan, Alabama.

The cribs being recalled in 2011 are SafetyCraft-brand full-size and portable drop-side cribs manufactured or distributed by Generation 2 Worldwide. The plastic hardware used to attach the drop-side to the body of the crib can fail, detaching the drop side from the corner and creating a space between the drop side and the crib's mattress. Infants and toddlers can become trapped in that space, putting them at risk of strangulation or suffocation.

Additionally, the plastic mattress support hardware can fail, causing the mattress to cave in at the unsupported corner. This also creates a space where small children can become trapped and suffocate or strangle.

The 2010 recall was of ChildESIGNS-brand drop-side cribs also manufactured by Generation 2 Worldwide. According to the CPSC's recall notice, the faulty hardware on the SafetyCraft cribs appears to be identical to the faulty hardware on the ChildESIGNS.

It has been reported that three infants suffocated to death and at least 20 more children were injured by Generation 2 Worldwide and ChildESIGNS cribs with the same plastic hardware used in the SafetyCraft cribs, according to the CSPC report.

CPSC urges parents to stop using, not try to repair, these dangerous drop-side cribs

In its press release, the federal agency says, "CPSC staff urges parents and caregivers to stop using these cribs immediately and find an alternative, safe sleeping environment for their baby. Do not attempt to fix these cribs."

Later SafetyCraft-brand cribs that were manufactured by Foundations Children's Products of Medina, Ohio, are not subject to this recall. That is not to say they are necessarily safe, however.

Drop-side cribs have been subject to at least 28 product recalls since 1986, according to the CPSC's website. On January 13, we reported on a recent product liability lawsuit involving drop-side cribs, brought by a Massachusetts couple after the wrongful death of their son.

If you own a drop-side crib, you should seriously consider finding a safer sleeping option for your child. If you wish to keep using one, examine it carefully to ensure its hardware is in good order. While you are doing so, look for the following to determine whether it is part of this recall:

  • If the crib was manufactured by Foundations Children's Products, it should have the word "Foundations" printed on the mattress support assembly instructions label, which is located under the crib's mattress. If you do not find this label, it is best to assume your crib is subject to the recall and stop using it immediately.
  • SafetyCraft cribs subject to the recall may have a "SafetyCraft" label affixed to the headboard or footboard.
  • Product labels on the recalled cribs may list the place of manufacture as Indonesia or Dothan, Alabama.
  • Some of the recalled cribs may have a clear plastic headboard and footboard.
  • The cribs are in use in both homes and child care facilities.
  • Generation 2 Worldwide ceased operations in 2005, so cribs newer than that are not part of this recall. Because the manufacturer is out of business, however, the CPSC has limited information about where and how many of the cribs were sold.

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