Defective Simplicity Baby Cribs Linked to 11 Infant Deaths

Following the recent death of another infant in a defective Simplicity drop side crib, federal regulators have issued a new urgent recall notice in an effort to find all Simplicity baby cribs that are still in use. This is at least the eleventh death associated with more than 2 million recalled Simplicity baby cribs.

According to a safety alert posted by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the agency was recently notified about the September death of seven-month-old baby from Princeton, Kentucky. The child became entrapped in the drop side crib when a part broke.

More than 2 million Simplicity drop side cribs have been recalled in recent years due to the failure of the crib’s plastic hardware, which can cause the drop side to detach or separate from the crib. The Simplicity recalls were issued in December 2005, June 2007, September 2007, September 2008 and July 2009.

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“CPSC is reminding parents and caregivers to check their cribs to see if they have a recalled Simplicity drop side crib,” the commission said in its announcement. “Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled cribs and find an alternative, safe sleeping environment for their baby. Consumers should not attempt to fix the cribs.”

Simplicity Inc. went out of business in 2008 in the wake of the crib recalls and infant deaths. Many major retailers who sold Simplicity products, such as Toys “R” Us, Wal-Mart, Target, J.C. Penny and Kmart have agreed to accept returns.

Even after Simplicity went out of business, the CPSC has continued to discover problems with Simplicity products. Every drop side crib ever manufactured by Simplicity has been recalled. But the recalls were not limited to Simplicity cribs. In August 2008, about 900,000 Simplicity bassinets were recalled. In January, about 200,000 Fisher-Price Rainforest Portable Play Yards made by Simplicity were recalled as well.

Simplicity’s assets were purchased by SFCA, Inc., of Reading, Pa. The CPSC reports that SFCA was uncooperative in working with the commission to conduct recalls and refused to take returned products from customers. In the most recent re-announcement, the CPSC reports that SFCA “no longer appears to be conducting day to day operations” and has stopped answering phone calls and returning e-mails.

Several baby crib lawsuits have been filed against both Simplicity and major retailers, such as Wal-Mart, in connection with Simplicity drop side crib deaths. In addition, a number of major retailers and manufacturers have stopped selling drop side cribs due to repeated problems with drop side cribs.

One of the biggest concerns surrounding drop-side cribs is that they are not sufficiently durable. In addition, many parents reuse the cribs for multiple children or pass them down to other family members. When the cribs are disassembled and then reassembled, the risk of defect designs causing dangerous conditions increases greatly. In addition, many of the cribs are inexpensive and built without durable parts.

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2 Comments

  • AmandaMarch 12, 2010 at 5:28 pm

    I have one of the cribs.I have used it for my daughter, until recently.She got stuck and now I'm not using it.I called walmart today and they said they would refund my money.Hopefully these crib makers learn how to make cribs someday so all these innocent children don't get hurt or killed.I can't believe how many recalls have been issued for childrens' products.

  • DavidFebruary 21, 2010 at 11:49 pm

    What an incredibly humane group of individuals that purchased the assets of Simplicity. The head of the Company said he was going to do the right thing. To date, he is still somewhat confused as to what the right thing to do might be. I hope he makes millions and spends it all on doctors.

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