OnSafety is the Official Blog Site of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. Here you'll find the latest safety information as well as important messages that will keep you and your family safe. We hope you'll visit often!

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Expansion Recall of Rechargeable Batteries Used in Summer Infant Video Monitors

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You may have missed the first notice, but if you use a Summer Infant video baby monitor, be sure to check your nursery to see if you have one of the models with the recalled rechargeable batteries. This recall has been expanded to include an additional 740,000 units and there have been additional incident reports. The monitor’s rechargeable batteries can overheat, cause burns or even property damage.

Today’s announcement from CPSC and Summer Infant includes more than 20 models of Summer Infant handheld color video monitors. Check the recall for specific model and date codes included.

Summer Infant video baby monitor and warning label

Summer Infant is providing a postage paid envelope to return the batteries in exchange for a free replacement battery.

Stop using the video monitors immediately, remove the batteries and contact Summer Infant at (800) 426-8627 to get the free replacement battery. The monitor can continue to be used on AC power with the power cord. Help get the word out about the recall and encourage caregivers, grandparents and child care centers to take advantage of the recall remedy.

We’re also reminding you that you can get direct email notification about product recall announcements on CPSC’s email subscription page.

As for those traditional baby monitor cords, we urge you to keep these cords at least 3 feet away from your baby’s crib to avoid a strangulation hazard. Here’s a video that shows why:

 

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2014/04/expansion-recall-of-rechargeable-batteries-used-in-summer-infant-video-monitors/

GE-Brand Added to Gree Dehumidifier Recall; Serious Fire and Burn Risk

This recall blog has been updated since it was first posted on Sept. 12, 2013.

If you previously checked your dehumidifier to see if it was included in the Gree recall last year, please look again. And if you have not yet checked your dehumidifier, we strongly suggest you do so immediately.

GE-brand dehumidifiers, which were made by Gree Electric Appliances, were added in January 2014 to Gree’s recall of more than 2 million dehumidifiers. Gree has also added more Soleus Air models to the recall and expanded the date codes to include more products.

The firm and CPSC are now aware of the following reports associated with all 13 brands of recalled dehumidifiers:

  • 471 overheating or smoking incidents
  • 121 fires
  • $4.483 million in property damage.

The number of reported overheating incidents increased from 119 to 471 and the number of reported fires increased from 46 to 121 in the 7 months since the recall was first announced in September.

Don’t let this happen to you:

Property damage from fires involving recalled dehumidifiers.

This property damage is from fires involving recalled dehumidifiers manufactured by Gree Electric Appliances. The recall involves 13 brands of dehumidifiers. The dehumidifiers can overheat, smoke and catch fire.

If you have a dehumidifier in your home, check the two recall notices below to see if YOUR dehumidifier is included in the recalls. The recalled brands are:

  • Danby
  • De’Longhi
  • Fedders
  • Fellini
  • Frigidaire
  • GE
  • Gree
  • Kenmore
  • Norpole
  • Premiere
  • Seabreeze
  • SoleusAir
  • SuperClima

The specific models are listed here:

If you own one of the recalled products, stop using it and contact Gree for a refund.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2014/04/ge-brand-added-to-gree-dehumidifier-recall-serious-fire-and-burn-risk/

New Children’s Safety Standard: Soft Infant and Toddler Carriers

Blog en español

Mother carrying baby in soft infant carrierCPSC is continuing to make great progress with our child safety work to establish federal safety rules for infant and toddler products. The newest one, which takes effect Sept. 29, 2014, is for soft infant and toddler carriers.

A soft carrier is usually made of sewn fabric and holds a child upright. It is designed to be worn by a caregiver. Soft carriers are typically meant for full-term babies who weigh seven pounds or more through toddlers up to 45 pounds.

The new regulation requires that all new soft infant carriers will be tested to meet safety standards. Some key safety requirements are:

  • Leg openings are designed to prevent an infant from falling through them.
  • The carrier can hold the weight that it’s advertising.
  • The fasteners and straps are designed so that they won’t come apart while a caregiver is holding a child.
  • All soft carriers must contain a warning label about fall and suffocation risks with the product.

CPSC received nearly 125 incident reports—including four deaths—related to soft infant and toddler carriers between January 1999 and July 15, 2013.

Whether your child is placed in a crib, a stroller, or a babywearing product, we want you to have confidence that these products are covered by strong safety standards.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2014/04/new-childrens-safety-standard-soft-infant-and-toddler-carriers/

Liquid Laundry Packets: An Update

Blog en español

single-use liquid laundry packetsAbout a year and a half ago, we began warning you about dangers connected to single-load liquid laundry packets. These packets are filled with highly concentrated, toxic chemicals. A 7-month-old in Florida died from swallowing the soap.

CPSC has received about 1,230 reports of children unintentionally injuring themselves with packets. Injuries include swallowing the detergent and getting the chemical in their eyes or on their skin. The Poison Help Line reports even more: Nearly 17,500.

Several companies that make these packets—Cot ‘n Wash, Dial, Procter & Gamble, and Sun Products—have agreed to make some changes to begin addressing these safety concerns. We want you to know about these changes, as CPSC was a driving force in making them happen. Importantly, though, we believe more must be done, and we’re continuing to call on companies to build more safety into these products more quickly and more robustly.

child warning label that appears on packages.Here are some of the changes so far:

Safety standards: Makers and sellers of laundry packets have come together, along with consumer advocates and CPSC staff, to start the process of creating a voluntary consensus standard. ASTM International, a standards setting organization, is overseeing this process. The goal is for all of the members to work together, as quickly as possible, to craft a strong safety standard that meaningfully protects children from these products.

Opaque packaging: Part of the allure of these packets for young children is that they can look like familiar items such as candy, toys and teething products. Companies have changed the containers that hold the packets to be opaque.

Labels and Warnings: “Keep Out of Reach of Children” and “Keep Contents Out of Eyes” safety warning stickers and graphics have been placed in multiple places on the containers. Also, look for posters and other warnings near laundry packets in stores. Warning labels alone are not the answer, but are part of a larger system of safety.

In addition, companies are researching a switch to containers that are more difficult for children to open. Safety latches—both on containers and on cabinets—can be a deterrent to children getting access to these packets. As with all household cleaning products, make sure to keep these packets tightly closed in the original containers and out of sight and out of reach of young children.

These companies also report that they are researching chemical formulations of the laundry detergent in the packets, with the goal to find formulations that remain effective, but are less toxic.

Our hope is that these first steps for these products make them safer and that all companies that make liquid laundry packets will join these safety efforts.

Follow these safety tips if you use these products in your home:

  • Do not let children handle laundry packets
  • Do not puncture or take packets apart
  • Do not leave loose packets around – keep them stored securely in the container
  • Store out of a child’s sight and reach in their original containers
  • Keep containers closed and dry
  • Read and follow package warnings and instructions

Remember, these packets can quickly dissolve upon contact with water, wet hands and saliva. They can also rupture, releasing the chemicals into eyes. If you or your child swallows or is exposed to these chemicals, call Poison Help immediately at (800) 222-1222.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2014/03/update-liquid-laundry-packets/

New Stroller and Carriage Safety Standard: What It Means

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Good news, parents! CPSC has approved a new federal safety standard that will improve the safety of all carriages and strollers sold after September 10, 2015.

From January 2008 through June 2013, CPSC staff received about 1,300 safety-related reports for children 4 years old and younger that involved strollers. The numbers, which may change in the future as more reports come into the agency, include:

  • Four deaths
  • 14 hospitalizations
  • Nearly 391 injuries

The new safety standard requires that all strollers and carriages be made, tested and labeled to minimize the hazards seen in the above incidents. These include:

  • Hinge issues that have resulted in pinched, cut, or amputated fingers or arms. These issues have the highest injury rate of all hazards associated with strollers;

  • Broken and detached wheels;
  • Parking brake failures;
  • Locking mechanism problems;
  • Restraint issues, including children being able to unbuckle themselves and broken and loose stroller seat belts;
  • Structural integrity; and
  • Stability

Once the rule takes effect, nearly all strollers sold are required to meet the new requirements. Here are just a few of the stroller types:

Different types of strollers including jogging strollers, double strollers, travel systems, single strollers, umbrella strollers, prams and wagon strollers.

Remember, buckle your child up every time you use the stroller and never leave a child unattended in a stroller. After all, falls are the cause of many injuries associated with strollers.

As Acting Chairman Bob Adler recently said, “I believe it is time that we put a strong mandatory standard in place: A federal standard that helps to ensure that a stroller ride is a safe ride for babies and an equally safe ride for toddlers.”

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2014/03/new-stroller-and-carriages-safety-standard-what-it-means/