The U.S. government is preparing a safety warning about baby slings — popular infant carriers that parents can sling around their chests to carry their baby. The concern is that infants can suffocate, and a few have. Consumer Product Safety Commission Chairman Inez Tenenbaum says her agency is getting ready to issue a general warning to the public. Safety advocates have cautioned that some slings, where the baby falls into a curved or “C-like” position inside the sling, can lead to suffocation by restricting the baby’s breathing.
Also, Infantino LLC is recalling more than 1 million baby slings after three infant deaths were reported, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said Wednesday.The CPSC said consumers should immediately stop using the slings for children younger than four months due to suffocation risks. Since 2009, the CPSC received reports of three deaths due to the slings, of infants aged 7 weeks, 6 days and 3 months. Infantino sold the slings in the United States and Canada from January 2003 through March 2010 at stores including Wal-Mart, Burlington Coat Factory, Target, Babies “R” Us and online at Amazon.com for between $25 and $30. The CPSC said Infantino is offering free replacement products for the company’s SlingRider and Wendy Bellissimo baby slings, which are carriers with padded shoulder straps worn by parents to carry children weighing up to 20 pounds.
Consumers can contact Infantino toll-free at (866) 860-1361 between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit the firm’s Web site at http://www.infantino.com to receive a free replacement product. Consumers may choose between a Wrap & Tie carrier, a 2 in 1 Shopping Cart Cover or a 3 in 1 Grow & Play Activity Gym.