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Archive for the 'Health & Safety' Category

RECALL: Pottery Barn Cribs

Recalled Pottery Barn Crib All righty, campers, in today’s baby crib recall news … Pottery Barn Kids just recalled 82,000 drop-side cribs to the usual round-up of ghastly hazards – entrapment, suffocation and falls. In this case, the sides detach when the hardware breaks, or if the crib has been improperly assembled, or if it’s an old, much-used crib. PBK has had 36 reports of drop side malfunction, including 7 minor injuries. One child’s head was caught between the mattress and the drop side, but was not injured. Parents were sure freaked out, though. There are several models implicated in the recall, so follow the link to see if yours is one – then contact PB for a conversion kit to immobilize the drop side.

Posted on Thursday, July 15th, 2010
Under: Babies & Tots, Health & Safety | No Comments »

Another Million Crib Recalls

Simplicity Crib Recall (Courtesy CPSC) Ah, yes, another crib recall. Eight of them, actually, and they’re just the latest in a long, long line.

Look,  here’s the deal. If you’ve got a crib of any kind made by anyone. anywhere, check for missing, broken or loose parts. Tighten the hardware. Give it a good shake. And if the crib is 10 or more years old, its safety is questionable. Check out the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s crib safety website for more details on what to look for. More on the specific cribs in this recall in a moment, but first this…

A number of readers have suggested that people aren’t putting the cribs together correctly, and that a couple of DIY failures have prompted an overreaction. But it’s far more than “a couple,” as you’ll see in a moment and in at least one case, the problem is a design flaw that leaves consumers unable to tell – literally – which way’s up. The finished crib looks just like the picture in the instructions, but it’s wrong. And dangerous.

Here’s today’s list of recalled cribs. Sigh… Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Friday, June 25th, 2010
Under: Babies & Tots, Health & Safety | 1 Comment »

TOY Recall: 44K Baby Blankies

Recall: Blanket Oh look – a recall that doesn’t involve collapsing cribs, deadly darts, flaming helicopter toys or lead paint! Nope, this time the feds and an import company, Rashti & Rashti, have recalled 44,000 pink baby blankets, sold at Target between January and August 2009, because those cute little balls on the giraffe’s horns come off, posing a choking hazard. No injuries to date. Details here.

Posted on Thursday, May 20th, 2010
Under: Health & Safety | No Comments »

TOY RECALL: Deadly Darts

Recalled toy dart sets This is just heartbreaking. Two boys, ages 9 and 10, died after accidentally inhaling rubber darts from a cheap toy. Now the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Family Dollar Stores is recalling 1.8 million of these toy dart gun sets, which include soft, pliable plastic darts. The incidents involved boys in Chicago and Milwaukee who were goofing around, as kids sometimes do, and apparently stuck the darts in their mouths.

Here’s where things get interesting. This isn’t the first such recall – there was a similar one in December after an 8-year-old boy died. At the time, I wondered Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Tuesday, May 18th, 2010
Under: Toy Recalls | 2 Comments »

70 Ways to Fight Childhood Obesity

Michelle Obama (Olivier Douliery/Abaca Press/MCT Photo)The White House unveiled a mammoth proposal to reduce childhood obesity on Tuesday, with a 124-page report and 70 recommendations to slow what has become a health crisis among children. The goal? To get the nation’s childhood obesity rate from the current, staggering 20% down to 5% by 2030.

Among those recommendations, everything from a direct attack on the amount of junk food advertising aimed at kids, restaurant portion sizes and consideration of a sugar and fat tax, to ensuring that kids can safely bike and walk to school and play outdoors. Read more about the White House task force’s plan here and get a thoughtful perspective from Catherine Holecko,’s guide to family fitness, here.

Posted on Wednesday, May 12th, 2010
Under: Health & Safety | No Comments »

RECALL: More Simplicity Cribs

Recalled crib - CPSC If that headline looks familiar, it should. It’s the latest in a very long line of crib recalls involving the now defunct Simplicity company. So far, more than 2.3 million of these things have been recalled. The walls fall off or the structure collapses. Now the federal Consumer Product Safety Commission has recalled all Simplicity full-size cribs with tubular metal mattress-support frames. The frames can bend, causing the mattress to collapse, taking your baby with it. A Massachusetts 1-year-old suffocated after becoming wedged in the folded mattress. Another child hurt hit head after he fell out through the bottom of the crib. And at least 12 other cribs have collapsed this way. The CPSC is not specifying how many cribs this recall involves because there are no longer any sales records for this wretched crib company. This particular structural collapse problem is not fixable, so if you’ve got one of these cribs, contact the store where you purchased it for a refund.

Want to see what the collapsed mattress support looks like?
Recalled crib - CPSC

Need more crib safety info? Click here for the CPSC Crib Information page.

Posted on Tuesday, May 4th, 2010
Under: Babies & Tots, Health & Safety | 1 Comment »

KIDS Meds Recalled

childrens-tylenol-recallThe FDA and McNeil, an international manufacturer of children’s liquid medications, is recalling more than 40 different kinds of over-the-counter children’s meds in the U.S. and abroad because of quality control problems. Lovely. Among them, all sorts of flavors of children’s Tylenol, Tylenol Plus, Motrin, Zyrtec and Benadryl. The company is issuing plenty of soothing pronouncements about this being a preventative measure and children not being in danger, but the reasons behind the recall include worries that some bottles have larger amounts of active ingredients than they’re supposed to, or inactive ingredients that don’t meet the company’s standards, and others contain particles (of what?). The full list of medications is here, along with what to do next and how to get a refund.

Posted on Monday, May 3rd, 2010
Under: Health & Safety | No Comments »

Antioch Baby Dies in Car

car seat The heartbreaking tale of the 7-month-old Antioch baby who died after her parents forgot her in the car overnight is a tragic reminder that cases of this sort crop up with horrifying frequency. An average of 37 babies die each year in hot cars, vans or SUVs; 445 babies since 1998. Authorities in the Antioch case are still investigating cause of death – temperatures dropped to 52 degrees and rose as high as 78 between the time tiny Sofia Wisher was accidentally left in the car at 11:30 p.m. Saturday night and when she was found at 2 p.m. on Sunday.

The very idea of forgetting one’s baby in the car is unfathomable, but the truth is, it can happen to anyone, anytime. And that horrifying truth is explained incredibly well in a story that, coincidentally, just earned Washington Post writer Gene Weingarten a Pulitzer Prize. Weingarten’s story, “Fatal Distraction,” takes you into the lives and hearts of the people it’s happened to, and sounds a warning bell for every parent who’s ever been exhausted, distracted or had a change of routine. In other words, all of us. Read it. Read it now. With a box of tissues nearby.

Posted on Tuesday, April 20th, 2010
Under: Health & Safety | No Comments »

RECALL: 150K Baby Gates

You know those wooden baby gates you put at the top of the stairs to keep little ones from tumbling down? If you’ve got one made by Evenflo, read on, because the U.S. Consumer Product Safety folks just recalled 150,000 of them. Seems the slats on the gate break. Evenflo has received 142 reports of slats breaking – one child actually fell down the stairs, one fell down just one step, and 11 kids were hurt as they fell through the gate. The gates were sold at Toys R Us, Kmart, Burlington Baby Depot, Amazon and other retailer between October 2007 and now. Check the model number here, then contact Evenflo (the same link tells you how) for a replacement gate.

Posted on Friday, March 26th, 2010
Under: Babies & Tots, Health & Safety | No Comments »

RECALL: 1 Million Baby Slings

Recalled baby sling Well, we knew this was coming, but it’s still utterly depressing. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety folks and the Infantino company just recalled a million Infantino “SlingRider” and “Wendy Bellissimo” infant slings. If you have one of these, stop using it immediately. The sling poses a suffocation hazard to young children. Three suffocation deaths occurred in these slings in 2009, including a 7-week-old baby in Philadelphia; a 6-day-old in Salem, Oregon; and a 3-month-old in Cincinnati. Heartbreaking.

Infantino is offering free replacement products, including a Wrap & Tie infant carrier, a 2-in-1 Shopping Cart Cover, or a 3-in-1 Grow & Play Activity Gym. More details here.

Posted on Wednesday, March 24th, 2010
Under: Babies & Tots, Health & Safety | No Comments »