By David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network
According to the U.S Consumer Product Safety Commission and the American Academy of Pediatrics, infants can suffer from injuries or even deaths due to improper crib and sleeping arrangements. The U.S Consumer Product Safety Commission explains what safety precautions parents should take when putting their infants to sleep.
All babies should be placed in a safe and secure crib, bassinette, or play-yard. They should not be placed near windows, for they pose a great danger to a sleeping baby. Injuries that are typical from babies being placed near windows include a serious fall hazard, glass breaking, or strangulation on a blind cord.
To reduce the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) or strangulation, place the baby on his or her back. Babies should not be placed on their sides or stomachs. Comforters, pillows, stuffed animals, and blankets should all be removed from the crib. It has been said that these items may cause strangulation, suffocation, choking, etc.
A parent or caretaker should make sure the crib has no missing parts or slats. Any part that is unstable, broken, or protruding out can cause great danger to the baby. It can also cause the crib to become disengaged, by therefore trapping the baby between the crib mattress and the rail.
If a crib needs to be fixed, only fix it with parts built or processed by the manufacturer. Make-shift repairs, and quick fix-its can create new and deadly hazards.
The mattress should also be tight, firm, and have no spaces in between it and the railings. In order to meet this standard, place two fingers in between the mattress and the railing. They should not be able to fit. If they do, your mattress is not big enough for the crib and it could cause a major hazard to the baby by falling or slipping through the sides.
Parents or caretakers should keep cords and baby monitors away from a child’s reach at all times, for they can cause a strangulation hazard.
Once your baby can push up on his or her hands and knees, lower the crib immediately in order to prevent climbing in and out of it.
Go to CPSG.org or call CPSC hotline routinely to see if your crib has been recalled.
For more information on crib child safety, see U.S Consumer Product Safety Commission: Crib Information Center.