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Are Drop Side Cribs Safe for Use?

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Updated July 03, 2014

Drop Side Cribs

Example of one of the models of drop side cribs.

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Question: Are Drop Side Cribs Safe for Use?
I've been hearing a lot about the dangers of drop side cribs? Some people are saying that it's illegal for hotels and day cares to use them. Is that true?
Answer:

Drop side cribs have definitely come under a lot of scrutiny in recent years. It seems there has been no end to the list of crib recalls, with millions of cribs being labeled as unsafe for use. Though drop side cribs are exceptionally convenient, they are plagued with many safety problems.

Drop Side Cribs: Current Legislation

As of December 2010, the Consumer Product Safety Commission has unanimously voted to ban the sale and resale of these cribs and to make their use in hotels and daycares illegal. The ban officially starts in June 2011, with hotels and daycares given a one year time period to replace inadequate and unsafe crib models.

Statistics Regarding Fatalities and Injuries

So what prompted the decision? Since 2000, at least 32 infants and toddlers were killed do to the faulty design and another 14 infant fatalities are under similar suspicion. Since 2005, Evenflo, Delta Enterprise Corporation, and Pottery Barn Kids have recalled more than 9 million defective cribs alone.

What Should Be Done With Drop Side Cribs

Many parents and families already have drop side cribs in their homes and may wonder what should be done. The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) encourages parents that it may not be necessary to trash their crib, but instead suggests that they investigate to see whether or not their crib has been recalled (See: How to Check on Product Recalls). Parents should check the hardware on the crib periodically to make sure the crib is working properly. The JPMA maintains that properly assembled drop side cribs which have not been recalled can be used with confidence.

Parents who utilize day care or hotel cribs may need to be vocal about their concerns regarding cribs which they can not maintain for themselves.

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