03.24.10 Parents told to stop using these popular carriers with children 4 months and younger
The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) today announced a voluntary recall of more than 1 million Infantino baby sling carriers, almost two weeks after the federal agency warned parents about the fatal dangers of this popular baby gear, The New York Times reports.
The CPSC considers this type of baby carrier too dangerous in the wake of three infant suffocations. CPSC officials warn that babies younger than 4 months old should not ride in the sling carriers regardless of brand because of the suffocation risk. This danger is highest in infants younger than 4 months because of their lack of head control.
The fabric of the carrier can block a baby's nose and mouth, causing death within minutes. Also, their airways can become restricted while their bodies are curled up in the carriers, according to the CPSC.
Infantino has posted a list of the affected sling model numbers. If you have an Infantino Slingrider or Wendy Bellisimo sling, you should contact Infantino for a free alternate product. For more information, parents and caregivers can also call Infantino at (866) 860-1361.
The popularity of baby slings has been on the rise over the past four years. There are no federal safety standards for infant slings. However, the CPSC on March 12 did issue recommended usage guidelines, which included making sure a baby's face is not covered and is visible at all times while he or she is being carried around in a sling.
Fit Pregnancy believes in "attachment parenting," which promotes the use of baby carriers for the close contact between a mom and baby. But check out our carrier safety tips so you can hold your infant close but securely while you're on the go.
Maria Vega is Fit Pregnancy magazine's copy editor.