UPDATE: August 9, 2011, 5:57 p.m. (ET): Despite ban, major online sellers, including eBay and Craigslist, continue allowing sellers to post drop-side cribs for sale on their sites.
Read more on Huliq.com:
Drop-side cribs illegal, but still selling on eBay, Craigslist
Safety rules making it illegal to sell or donate an old drop-side baby crib—including selling them at yard or garage sales—officially take effect today, Tuesday, June 28. Government officials have even recommended destroying the drop-side crib you may already own and purchasing a new one for your baby, the new standards for baby cribs are so strict. The drop-side cribs were originally designed for ease of placement and lifting of babies, but the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission found that more than 30 babies were documented to have died after slipping through the broken adjustable rails--which can result in a “V-shaped” gap--either by hanging or suffocation. The drop-side cribs are also suspected in the deaths of about a dozen additional infants.
New safety rules for cribs require the mattress supports to be stronger, the hardware on the cribs to be more durable, and for the testing of the cribs to be more stringent before they are placed on the market. For example, manufacturers were previously allowed to retighten bolts and screws on a crib during hardware testing, arguing that the tests mimicked the way a child might rattle the crib and, therefore, result in loose bolts or screws. However, the CPSC finally realized that this type of testing, while possibly realistic for the actions of a toddler, was not realistic for the actions of most parents. Most parents, after all, would not be familiar with the inner workings of the crib, and would not know how to tighten bolts and screws in the more obscure areas of the hardware, or even consider that it needed to be done for normal use of the product.
Now, all four sides of cribs will be required to be fixed, non-movable sides, and will have to be stronger and tougher in order to pass pre-market testing.
"After 30 years of having outdated standards, CPSC delivered on its promise and created the toughest crib safety standards in the world," Inez Tenenbaum, chairman of the CPSC, told the Associated Press. "Parents can now shop for a crib with confidence."
However, even though drop-side cribs can no longer be manufactured or sold, there are still many being used throughout the United States. Manufacturers have insisted that the unrecalled cribs are safe as long as parents properly maintain the cribs according to manufacturers’ instructions.
The new safety rules for cribs are being described by many as one of the most significant changes in child safety in literally decades.
Image: Wikimedia Commons