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Maryland has become the first state to ban the sale of crib bumpers. Crib bumpers are commonly used in a baby’s crib to protect a child’s head from bumping into the sides, and to protect a child’s arms and legs from getting caught between the slats. Many parents also invest in them to dress up their cribs.
In the last few years, more and more doctors and safety experts are advising parents to pass on the soft, cushiony crib bumpers because they pose a risk of suffocation. Infants lack the motor skills and neck control to extract themselves if they do get caught in a bumper pad. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, bumper pads should never be used in cribs. However, not everyone agrees that bumper pads are a risk to babies.
Now Maryland is the first state to ban the sale of these products altogether. The Maryland Health Department argues that bumper pads pose serious risks such as strangulation, suffocation, and death, without offering any tangible benefit.
Both in person and online sales have been banned, starting June 21, 2013. If a retailer continues to sell them, the first time will be a warning, and then after that each bumper sold carries up to a $500 fine.
It remains to be seen if other states follow Maryland’s lead, and whether there will be a reduction in the number of infant deaths in Maryland.
If you or a loved one have suffered injury or death from a consumer product, the attorneys at Kirkendall Dwyer LLP can help. Call us today for your free consultation.