Parents Are Alerted Once Again to the Dangers of Nap Nanny Baby Recliners

baby.jpg More than a year after being recalled, the Nap Nanny baby recliner has been attributed with the death of another baby prompting the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) to release an urgent appeal for all parents to immediately discontinue use and discard the product.(1)

The recliner, manufactured by Baby Matters LLC, a Pennsylvania company no longer in business, was designed to help relieve babies from the discomfort of gas and/or congestion. However, the product has been at the center of controversy since early 2010 when the company voluntarily recalled 30,000 of its recliners following the reported death of a four-month-old. At that time, the CPSC and Baby Matters had received 22 complaints, most involving babies five months of age and younger; these children were found hanging over the side or having fallen from the recliner despite being fastened in.(2)

The complaints claimed that even when the product’s harness was used, children could partially fall out or hang over the side of the recliner and, if the recliner was used in a crib, the child could become trapped between the product and the crib sides or bumpers.(2) This was the case in the most recent death of an eight-month-old from Hopatcong, N.J.(1)

Despite the initial recall, complaints about this product continued to rise. The CPSC reported that, prior to this most recent incident, it had received reports on 92 incidents of children falling out of or hanging from the recliner, including five deaths. In December 2012, the CPSC filed an administrative complaint against Baby Matters claiming, among other things, that the product had a faulty design and that the manufacturer failed to provide proper instructions and warnings regarding its use. In its defense, Baby Matters claimed the recliner was never intended for use in cribs.(3) The CPSC countered that there was also a risk of babies suffocating inside the recliner as was the case in at least one of the reported incidents.(4)

At that time, four retailers – Buy Buy Baby, Toys R Us/Babies R Us, Amazon.com and Diapers.com – agreed to a voluntary recall of the product offering consumers refunds for those models purchased from them. Baby Matters continued to maintain that its product was safe when used properly, but agreed to a recall in exchange for the CPSC’s complaint being dropped. Since Baby Matters was no longer in business, however, no offers to correct the problem or refund the purchase price could be made.(3)

Under federal law, it is a crime to sell any product that has been recalled either voluntarily or by order of the CPSC.(3) While all Nap Nanny products have been removed from store shelves, the CPSC is concerned recliners may still be sold through online auction sites, yard sales or flea markets, or otherwise handed down from friends and family members. As a result, the CPSC is alerting parents to the potential dangers posed by these recliners and urging anyone who may have one to dispose of it rather than pass it along.(4)

(1) http://www.newjerseynewsroom.com/healthquest/3-reasons-nap-nanny-baby-recliner-kills
(2) http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/2010/Baby-Matters-Recalls-Nap-Nanny-Recliners-Due-to-Entrapment-Suffocation-and-Fall-Hazards-One-Infant-Death-Reported
(3) http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Newsroom/News-Releases/2013/Nap-Nanny-and-Chill-Infant-Recliners-Recalled-by-Baby-Matters-LLC-After-Five-Infant-Deaths-CPSC-Firm-Settle-Administrative-Litigation-
(4) http://www.dailyrecord.com/story/news/local/2014/06/04/nap-nanny-blamed-hopatcong-childs-death/9962255/