30 Apr 2019

Govt urges parents to stop using recalled cradle

5:14 pm on 30 April 2019

The government is urging parents and caregivers to stop using a type of cradle that has been linked to the deaths of more than 30 American babies.

Fisher-Price Rock 'n Play

Fisher-Price Rock 'n Play Photo: Fisher-Price

Earlier this month the US Consumer Product Safety Commission announced a recall of Fisher-Price Rock'n'Play Sleepers, in which infants have rolled over while unrestrained or in other circumstances.

The cradles were sold in 2011 and 2012 in New Zealand through independent retailers, and again through the Warehouse last year.

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment spokesperson Martin Ruston said few sales have been made in this country and no fatalites had been reported.

However, people who have bought the cradles should contact Fisher-Price's parent company, Mattel, for a recall and a refund.

"Thankfully, to the best of our knowledge, there haven't been any record of incidents in New Zealand. Nonetheless, because the product had been supplied in New Zealand, the right thing to do was to trigger a recall to avoid any unfortunate tragedy here," Mr Ruston said.

He said babies should be put on a firm and flat surface when left to sleep for some length of time as per the Ministry of Health's advice, and manufacturers and suppliers should also avoid their products being used in a way that was not intended.

"This concept is known as 'reasonably foreseeable misuse' and is a legal requirement both here and overseas. In this instance there have been a number of reported fatalities in the USA which appear to have been attributable to the products being used for older infants, and with infants not being tethered correctly," Mr Ruston said.

"As a reminder to manufacturers that when they're producing products and it doesn't matter what they are, they have to have due regard to how consumers might have ended using them to make sure that they take that into accout when it comes to the design, construction warnings and so on and so forth."