Ban on drop-side cribs takes effect

June 28, 2011 3:14:45 PM PDT
There are new standards for the safety of baby cribs. Starting Tuesday, all cribs manufactured and sold in the United States cannot have sides that can be raised or lowered.

It is now also illegal to resell a crib with drop sides, even if it's at a yard sale or a garage sale.

The banning of all drop-side cribs is just one of the new tougher standards implemented on Tuesday.

It is a new era in child safety. The United States now has the strictest standards for crib safety in the world. The new rules are designed to assure that all cribs sold will be safe and durable, providing peace of mind to parents and safety for children.

More than 12 million cribs have been recalled for faulty hardware, breaking slats, dangerous drop-side designs and other flaws in the last four years. Stores across the country must now sell safer cribs .

"We must make sure manufacturers comply with the new standards," said Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan. "And I encourage consumers to call my office to report any drop-side cribs they find for sale in retail stores and secondhand markets."

The new federal standards include:

  • a ban on selling or making traditional drop-side crib,
  • Immobilizers and repair kits are not allowed,
  • wood slats must be made of stronger woods to prevent breakage,
  • crib hardware must have anti-loosening devices to keep it from coming loose or falling off,
  • mattress supports must be more durable,
  • and safety testing must be more rigorous.

"What has happened in the past, is that the baby can get wedged here between the mattress and this side because it can detach and become loose, and that has been the problem with the drop-sides," said the CPSC's Patty Davis.

Robert and Susan Cirigliano lost their 6-month-old son Bobby when he suffocated in a drop-side.

"The thing was, there was never any warning about these cribs, and after research we found that a lot of these cribs have caused injuries and deaths," said Robert Cirigliano.

At least 32 babies have been killed in drop-side cribs in the past decade. And, in the past five years, 7 million of the cribs have been recalled.

The Ciriglianos hope these new standards will prevent another tragedy. Still, the new ban is bittersweet.

"We miss Bobby every day," said Susan Cirigliano.

After 18 months, all childcare facilities and other public accommodations will have to provide only cribs meeting the new standards.

Representative Jan Schakowsky has been fighting for these new standards for 10 years.

"For the first time, cribs, strollers, high chairs...must be independently tested for safety before they come into our homes," said Schakowsky.

Selling or reselling a crib that doesn't meet the new standard is illegal. They also cannot be donated to charity.

If cribs that do not meet the new standards are seen being sold in stores, online or at rummage or garage sales, contact the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission at 800-638-2772 or the Illinois attorney general at 888-414-7678.


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