SAN ANTONIO – In a move aimed at protecting vulnerable babies as they sleep, the Consumer Product Safety Commission voted on a rule that bans the sale of unregulated infant sleep products, including inclined sleepers, infant hammocks and in-bed sleepers.
The new rule requires that by mid-2022, all products marketed for sleeping for babies up to five months old must meet safety standards.
“We’re hoping that a year from now, when parents go shopping for something for their infant to sleep in, it will meet a safety standard that they can feel comfortable with the fact it’s been tested and certified to that safety standard,” said Joe Martyak, a CPSC spokesman.
Millions of inclined sleepers have been recalled in recent years.
At least 94 infant deaths have been linked to inclined sleep products and 12 more have been linked to in-bed sleepers, according to Consumer Reports’ investigation.
Inclined sleepers position babies at an angle greater than 10 degrees. The risk, according to safety advocates, is that infants may roll over with their face into the side and suffocate, or their heads flop forward, cutting off their airway.
“We urge parents, if you have one of these inclined sleep products, please stop using it,” Martyak said.
Currently, cribs, bassinets, cradles and play yards have to meet standards for safe sleep. In one year, all infant sleep products will have to comply. In the meantime, shoppers may still see some of them in stores or listed on used product marketplaces.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, the safest way for a baby to sleep is on a firm, flat surface with no soft bedding or toys.