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US President Signs "Safe Sleep for Babies Act of 2021" into Law

SafeGuardSToys and Juvenile ProductsMay 23, 2022

President Biden signed into law H.R. 3182 prohibiting the manufacture and sale of inclined sleeper and crib bumpers for infants. These products will be deemed banned hazardous products 180 days after the law is enacted.

On May 16, 2022, US President Joe Biden signed into law H.R. 3182, the “Safe Sleep for Babies Act of 2021” which makes it unlawful to manufacture, sell, or distribute crib bumpers or inclined sleepers for infants.

Inclined sleepers for infants are defined in the Act as a product with an inclined sleep surface greater than ten degrees that is intended, marketed, or designed to provide sleeping accommodation for an infant up to 1 year old.

Crib bumpers are defined as:

  • Any material that is intended to cover the sides of a crib to prevent injury to any crib occupant from impacts against the side of a crib or to prevent partial or complete access to any openings in the sides of a crib or to prevent a crib occupant from getting any part of the body entrapped in any opening
  • Includes a padded crib bumper, a supported and unsupported vinyl bumper guard, and vertical crib slat covers; and
  • Does not include a non-padded mesh crib liner

The reasoning behind the new law is simple: both these baby sleep products are deemed unsafe and linked to nearly 200 infant deaths, as per Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) data. 

Crib bumpers present a risk of suffocation, strangulation and entrapment, and there’s no evidence that they prevent injury for young babies, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). Crib bumpers have been associated with 113 fatalities from January 1990 to March 2019, according to the CPSC.

Inclined sleepers are deemed unsafe, and have been tied to at least 94 deaths, says the AAP. Inclined sleep products are dangerous for infants to use when the products incline more than 10 degrees, according to the CPSC.

These two infant sleep products will be considered banned hazardous products, regardless of the date of manufacture, under section 8 of the Consumer Product Safety Act, no later than 180 days after the date of enactment of the Act.

Reference

  1. H.R. 3182

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Piyush Shah
SGS Consumer and Retail
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