Every time a product is recalled, I wonder if the recall was issued due to a real danger or due to misuse. Such is the case with the recent voluntary Bumbo recall. After a reported “84 incidents in which babies fell, including more than 20 skull-fracture reports,” the infant seat has come under new scrutiny. Now, since “infants can maneuver out of or fall from the seat,” four million Bumbo Baby Seats have been recalled. Was the recall necessary or do parents simply need to pay more attention to the warning labels?
The Bumbo was created in order to “seat young babies who can’t sit up by themselves yet.” In October of 2007, “1 million Bumbo seats were voluntarily recalled to provide additional warnings against use on raised surfaces.” However, at that time, a restraint belt was not added. On the Bumbo website, the new warning sticker is displayed. Using the device on a “level ground surface” is one of the cautions. There is also a video on how to properly use the Bumbo. Due to the recall, the company is offering a repair kit with a restraint belt to remedy the potential problem.
My Experience with a Similar Product
I don’t have a Bumbo. However, I do have a Prince Lionheart Bebe Pod which, in my opinion, is very similar to the recalled product. The Bebe Pod had a belt when I bought it. My son doesn’t use it all the time. However, when he does, he is placed on carpet. Like most babies, he doesn’t like to be restrained and was recently trying to arch his back and “get out” of the device. As he did this, I wondered, even with a strap, if he could wiggle out of it. Thus, I’m not surprised to hear of children getting out of the seat.
Read the Labels
If used improperly, many baby products can become unsafe. For instance, my car seat warning sticker advises users not to use it in the front seat with an air bag. My baby bath alerts parents about leaving infants unattended and the possibility of drowning. I would be lost without my car seat and my baby bath. However, I realize that if used improperly, these products could be hazardous. Considering a recall already went out warning people not to use the Bumbo on a raised surface, it is sad to learn of more incidents where babies were injured.
I’m all for safety and am “all ears” when I hear about a new recall on baby products. However, I also think people need to use common sense. If your child is left on the kitchen table unattended in a seat, with or without a strap, there is a chance they might get hurt. While the company should warn of the danger, it is ultimately the caregiver’s responsibility to watch the children.
By issuing the voluntary recall, I think Bumbo International Trust did the right thing. If you have a Bumbo, get the free repair kit and, for goodness sake, follow the advice on the new warning sticker. It’s there for a reason.
Jayne O’Donnell Safety agency recalls popular Bumbo infant floor seat usatoday.com Product Recalls Bumbo International Bumbo Baby Seats parenting.com
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