After 54 injuries and 12 deaths in 10 years, new federal standards for baby bouncers

More prominently placed and standardized warnings will mark baby bouncers after new federal standards for the items went into effect last week.

The baby registry staple many a new parent uses for holding or — especially if it vibrates — relaxing a baby was involved in 347 incidents reported to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission between Jan. 1, 2006, and July 6, 2016. Of those 347, there were injuries in 54 incidents and deaths in 12.

“The major cause of reported fatalities was suffocation when unrestrained babies turned over in a bouncer or bouncers tipped over onto soft surfaces (e.g., mattresses and comforters) when placed on adult beds and in cribs,” the CPSC says. “Additional incidents primarily involved infants falling while in bouncers, or falling from a bouncer placed in hazardous locations, such as kitchen counter tops, tables and other elevated surfaces.”

As such, the warning labels all will include:

▪ “Use bouncer ONLY on the floor.”

▪ “ALWAYS use restraints and adjust to fit snugly, even if baby falls asleep.”

▪ “STOP using bouncer when baby starts trying to sit up or has reached (manufacturer’s recommended maximum weight, not to exceed 20 lbs.), whichever comes first.”

Also, decreasing the possibility that users will miss the fall hazard warnings, the warnings will be placed on the front of the bouncer seat near the baby’s head and shoulders.

In addition to the above warnings on the label, the CPSC reminds caregivers to remain nearby when using bouncer seats.

David J. Neal: 305-376-3559, @DavidJNeal