Banning Drop-side Cribs
Synopsis: Health Canada launches public consultation on proposed ban on drop-side cribs. The safety of children's products, especially something as fundamental as a crib, is of the utmost importance to our government. Our crib requirements are already among the strictest in the world, but in the past few years, we have worked with the industry to recall several models of drop-side cribs voluntarily. If it becomes law, the proposed prohibition will apply to traditional retailers, second-hand stores, flea markets, garage sales, and products sold on Web-based retail establishments, such as eBay, Craigslist, and Kijiji.
- Drop Side Crib
A drop-side rail crib, as the name suggests, is a crib with hardware that enables one side of the crib to lower down. Some of these crib designs have two mobile sides instead of just one. Drop-side baby cribs were designed so that one of the sides slides down to allow a caretaker easy access to the baby. Although the sliding side was intended to help reach the baby, this popular crib design turned from convenient to dangerous. Recalls of the plan led to stronger safety regulations that ultimately banned the manufacture of drop-side cribs in 2011. Drop-side cribs now cannot be sold or donated.
The Honorable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of Health, announced that the Government is taking action to further protect the safety of infants and children by launching a public consultation process which could lead to a new prohibition against drop-side cribs.
The Government is asking for feedback on proposed changes to the Cribs and Cradles Regulations of the Hazardous Products Act that would, most notably, prohibit the advertisement, sale, and importation in Canada of traditional drop-side cribs, as well as other cribs with sides that are not rigidly attached to the crib ends.
The crib hardware can break or fail, allowing the drop-side to detach from the crib. When the drop-side detaches, a hazardous gap is created between the drop-side and the crib mattress in which infants and toddlers can become wedged or entrapped, posing a risk of strangulation and suffocation.
Children can also fall from the crib when the drop-side detaches or fails to latch and lock in the manufacturer's recommended use position. Health Canada is aware of approximately 90 drop-side crib incidents in Canada in the last ten years.
"The safety of children's products, especially something as fundamental as a crib, is of the utmost importance to our government," said Minister Aglukkaq. "Our crib requirements are already among the strictest in the world, but in the past few years, we have worked with the industry to recall several models of drop-side cribs voluntarily. We believe an outright ban on the traditional style of drop-side cribs may be required to protect our children better."
In addition to this proposed prohibition, the proposal calls for an allowance for the uppermost portion of the crib side to fold, pivot, or move concerning the frame to provide easier access to the occupant.
If it becomes law, the proposed prohibition will apply to traditional retailers, second-hand stores, flea markets, and garage sales, as well as products sold on Web-based retail establishments, such as eBay, Craigslist, and Kijiji.
The Government is also asking for feedback on several other potential amendments to the Cribs and Cradles Regulations, including changes to performance requirements and test methods for crib accessories such as change tables. For complete details on proposed amendments, please see the consultation document posted on the Health Canada website. Interested parties are invited to submit comments by December 15, 2010.
There are several steps that parents and caregivers can take to help make sure their crib is safe:
- Consult the Consumer Product Recalls Database to verify if their model of the crib has been recalled and, if so, what further action is recommended.
- Parents and caregivers should also regularly verify the safety of their baby's crib.
- Cribs should not be used if any parts are loose or missing or there are any signs of damage.
- Cribs should also not be used if they can not be assembled properly as per the instructions.
- Only parts obtained from the original manufacturer must be used for repairs. Broken crib parts must not be repaired with tape, wire, or rope.
For more information on safe sleeping practices for infants, visit Health Canada's Consumer Information - Safe Sleep Practices for Infants.
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Cite This Page (APA): Health Canada. (2010, September 29). Banning Drop-side Cribs. Disabled World. Retrieved March 2, 2024 from www.disabled-world.com/medical/recalls/cribs.php
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