GUEST COLUMN: Product recall alerts save children’s lives

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By The Staff

Parenting in today’s world can be a daunting task.  As Attorney General, I have worked hard to give parents and law enforcement the tools they need to better protect Kentucky kids. Sadly, sometimes the things we least expect pose the greatest danger to our children.

The recent death of a six-month-old Iowa boy from strangulation after being trapped in his crib should sound an alarm for parents and daycare providers across Kentucky and the nation about the importance of child safety product recall information.  The infant’s death, as well as numerous reports of injuries,  prompted the manufacturer, Doral Asia, to recall more than 630,000 of its cribs because their drop sides can detach, creating a space where the child could become trapped.  These cribs were sold at major department stores, including Wal-Mart, Kmart and Sears.

In January, consumers were also alerted to another high-profile recall involving Graco’s Passage, Alano, and Spree strollers and travel systems due to fingertip amputation and laceration hazards. The recall affected about 1.5 million strollers.  And over the holidays, I alerted Kentuckians to numerous toys that had been recalled because of high lead content or safety hazards.

Recalls of children’s products can only be successful if the information reaches those who need it most.  I want to ensure that Kentucky parents, daycares and caretakers are aware of the latest child product recall information so they can protect their kids from possible injury or even death.

My Office of Consumer Protection and I are working with the CPSC and several of our state government partners on a public awareness campaign that will be launched in the coming weeks to help ensure that important child product recall information is distributed to childcare providers across the Commonwealth.

In 2008, an estimated 63,700 nursery product-related injuries among children under the age of five were reported in U.S. hospital emergency departments.  The CPSC also reports a total of 247 deaths from 2004-2006 associated with nursery products.  We can protect our children from these types of potentially fatal injuries by ensuring that these products are removed from our homes and daycares.

If you are a parent or caretaker, make sure you sign-up to receive child product recall alerts available, at no charge, through the CPSC’s website at http://www.cpsc.gov/ . You can also find these alerts on my website at http://ag.ky.gov/ . Working together, we can ensure a safer and brighter future for Kentucky kids.