Fisher-Price's Rock 'n Play Sleeper 'Is Deadly and Should Be Recalled Immediately,' Says the AAP
The American Academy of Pediatrics is calling for a complete recall of the Fisher-Price Rock ‘n Play Sleeper, which the AAP is now stating “has been tied to 32 sleep-related infant deaths.”
On Friday, the well-known child- and baby-product company issued a statement in conjunction with the Consumer Product Safety Commission, alerting parents and families to stop using the baby sleeper improperly due to at least 10 deaths that occurred after infants rolled over in the product.
Four days later, on Tuesday, the AAP urged the CPSC to order a recall on the Rock ‘n Play immediately, claiming that the Friday statement “did not go far enough to ensure safety and protect infants.”
“This product is deadly and should be recalled immediately,” said AAP President Dr. Kyle Yasuda, MD, FAAP, in his organization’s statement. “When parents purchase a product for their baby or child, many assume that if it’s being sold in a store, it must be safe to use. Tragically, that is not the case.”
“There is convincing evidence that the Rock ‘n Play inclined sleeper puts infants’ lives at risk, and CPSC must step up and take immediate action to remove it from stores and prevent further tragedies,” he added.
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According to the CPSC, the deaths were a result of potential improper use. As the statement read: “The CPSC is aware of 10 infant deaths in the Rock ‘n Play that have occurred since 2015, after the infants rolled from their back to their stomach or side, while unrestrained. All 10 infants were 3 months or older.” The statement also includes highlights from the Fisher-Price warnings on the product, which indicate that families should stop using the Rock ‘n Play when their children begin rolling over or hit 3 months of age.
In the AAP’s Wednesday recall request, Dr. Rachel Moon, MD, FAAP — the organization’s chair of the AAP Task Force on Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) — said, “We cannot put any more children’s lives at risk by keeping these dangerous products on the shelves.”
She opined that the product “should be removed from the market immediately” because “it does not meet the AAP’s recommendations for a safe sleep environment for any baby. Infants should always sleep on their back, on a separate, flat and firm sleep surface without any bumpers or bedding.”
AAP also cites a Consumer Reports article, published Monday, that claims an “ongoing investigation has turned up deaths of babies even younger than the 3-month threshold cited in the April 5 warning” as part of the 32 reported incidents, “and go beyond the risk of rollover.”
Mattel, Fisher-Price’s parent company, said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE on Wednesday that while “the safety of children is our highest priority” as “the loss of a child is tragic and heartbreaking,” the company plans to “stand by the safety of the Rock ‘n Play Sleeper.”
“The product meets all applicable safety standards, including those of the international standards organization, known as ASTM International, and is certified by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA),” the statement continued. “We continue to work closely with the Consumer Product Safety Commission regarding the safe use of our products, including the Rock ‘n Play Sleeper.”
“It is essential that the product warnings and instructions are always followed. We will continue to do all we can to ensure that parents and caregivers have the information necessary to create a safe sleep environment for infants.”
At Least 10 Infants Have Died Using Fisher-Price’s Rock ‘n Play Sleeper
Chuck Scothon, general manager at Fisher-Price, noted that a “child fatality is an unimaginable tragedy” in a statement shared Friday.
“Fisher-Price and every one of our employees take the responsibility of being part of your family seriously, and we are committed to earning that trust every day,” Scothon wrote in his statement, which was obtained by CNN, claiming that the sleeper meets all “applicable safety standards.”
After the warning was made public, Fisher-Price publicly shared a statement regarding the sleeper on Twitter that said they “provide guidance about how to use our products on the front of the product packaging, in the product instructions and our website.”
The commission also warned to never add blankets, pillows, stuffed toys or other items to the environment and always place infants to sleep on their backs.
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