Product Liability

Defective bassinets pose suffocation hazard

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commissionand Health Canada announced a recall in conjunction with Dorel Juvenile Group, Inc. of Columbus, Ind., of approximately 77,000 Eddie Bauer “Sooth & Sway” Play Yards. The play yards function as all-in-one play pens, changing tables, and bassinets with various features designed to entertain children and help keep their diapers and other needs organized.

The agencies issued the recall after receiving complaints about the rocking bassinet feature of the play yards. According to the CPSC, the bassinets can tilt even when they are secured by straps in non-rocking mode. They can also become stuck in an uneven position, allowing infants to become lodged in a corner or against the sides.

The CPSC received 6 reports of children who had become wedged in a corner with their faces pressed to the side or bottom of the bassinet. One child had started turning purple and could not breathe when it was discovered. The child recovered fully and no serious injuries were reported. Additional complaints stated that children had rolled to their sides but were not dangerously pressed against the sides or bottom.

Consumers can still use their Eddie Bauer play yards, but the CPSC urges them to immediately avoid using the bassinet feature of their play yards. Parents who own one of the defective units can contact Dorel and obtain a $40 voucher that is good toward the purchase of a new Dorel product.

Models included in the recall are all units numbered 05046. Model number 05044 units manufactured before December 1, 2008 are also included. Canadian versions contain different model numbers (please refer to Health Canada). The model numbers and date of manufacture are printed on a sticker on one of the support legs underneath the play yard. The play yards were sold at Target, Sears, Burlington Coat Factory, and various Internet retailers stores throughout the country from January 2008 to May 2009.

Consumers may contact Dorel Juvenile Group at 888-233-4903 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday Eastern Time or visit Dorel’s website at http://www.djgusa.com/.