Keeping Babies Safe lauds U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s decision to eliminate dangerous supplemental mattresses intended for mesh-sided play yards
Keeping Babies Safe (KBS), a nationwide non-profit organization dedicated to infant safety, is lauding the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) for unanimously voting to restrict the sale of supplemental crib mattresses, which have continually proved fatal among infants in mesh-sided play yards.
On January 26, the CPSC voted unanimously (4-0) to publish a final rule for aftermarket mattresses, following a petition submitted by KBS in 2015. The rule will eliminate dangerous supplemental mattresses intended to be added to mesh play yards in addition to non-full size rigid cribs.
“We are tremendously pleased and relieved that the CPSC recognizes supplemental mattresses can be fatal in portable cribs and play yards,” said Davis, based in Warren, NJ. “We launched this crusade in 2015 to ban dangerous after-market and supplemental mattresses. Since then, we have worked tirelessly to educate regulators, lawmakers and consumers about its dangerous misuse, as a clear and evident safety hazard.
“The CPSC decision is important for my late son, Garret, and the many other babies who senselessly lost their lives from these mattresses by suffocating in the mesh sides of their portable play yards,” she said.
With the decision, all aftermarket mattresses will have to be essentially the same as the original mattress that is sold with the play yard and subject to rigorous, third-party testing. The proposed rule will cover all mattresses sold for full-size cribs and will require a firmness test, as soft surfaces are linked to infants deaths.
“The commission’s decision will save lives, send a stark message to manufacturers who recklessly sell a hazardous product and hopefully serve as comfort to the families who continue to struggle with the lifetime ordeal that supplemental mattresses have caused,” Davis said.
KBS, along with Kids in Danger, the Consumer Federation of America and other key child safety organizations, continues to advise young parents that flat, firm sleep surface is the best way in which infants should sleep. Having soft mattresses and supplemental mattresses on the market deters the important message, as parents are quick to assume that softer adds to comfort.
“We applaud the CPSC’s vote today that finalized a critically important rule to make crib mattresses safer,” said Rachel Weintraub, legislative director and general counsel with Consumer Federation of America. “This rule will establish a strong standard for all crib and play yard mattresses to address suffocation and entrapment to provide a safe sleep environment.”
“It was great to see the CPSC vote 4-0 to improve the safety of crib mattresses. This new rule will keep babies safe in sleep products such as cribs, play yards and portable cribs,” stated Nancy Cowles, executive director of Kids In Danger. For the first time, crib mattresses will have to be tested for safety to avoid gaps that might lead to suffocation and dangerously soft surfaces. Play yard replacement mattresses will have to meet the same safety standard as the mattresses sold with the product.”
Keeping Babies Safe is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides education, assistance, advocacy and leadership in the development of safer infant sleep products and practices. Learn more about KBS at keepingbabiessafe.org.