Tuesday, October 05, 2010

baby bargainista addresses recent product recalls

In this week’s baby bargainista column, Rebecca Atkinson discusses the recent rash of product recalls on items for babies and young children.

As a parent, one of the things you do not wish to hear about are product recalls especially when they relate to items you own or are using. You also don’t want to think that the very products you use to keep your children safe are not safe.

On Thursday September 30, Fisher-Price announced a recall to more than 11 million toys and items across North America. The recalls are voluntary and are not related to each other, other than the fact that they happen to pose the risk of potential injury.

Consumers are advised to stop using the recalled products and call the recall hotline (800) 432-5437 between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. ET Monday through Friday.

Last Wednesday, articles began surfacing urging parents to stop using popular sleep positioners designed to stop infants from rolling over on their stomachs. What was supposed to be a product to help reduce SIDS, may in fact also cause suffocation.

Babies R Us is among one of several North American retailers and manufacturers that have decided to stop selling or to withdraw the product from store shelves. A check of their websites show they are no longer selling the product online.

As a mother of a child with gastroesophageal reflux disease, we had seen several recommendations advocating we use positioners to help MJ stay off her back, and more on her side (avoid choking stomach acid coming back up). However, with her condition, she was nothing but a wiggle worm so we worried about exactly this problem and chose not to use one. After reading this, I feel good about our choice not to use one.

Since there is no official recall, there is no recourse for parents who own one of these positioners. The good news is they generally retailed for $20 or less so while you might be out of some money, thankfully it’s not an exorbitant amount.

Have you ever owned a recalled product? Do you follow the advice to stop using products (and get replacements where applicable?), or do you continue using them? What if it was your child’s favourite toy – what would you do then?

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