Since 1930, Fisher-Price has produced baby toys, gear, and accessories. Almost every kid played with the Retro Chatter Phone, ate their lunch in a Healthy Care Booster Seat, and lounged in a Deluxe Bouncer. Recently, this household American name has been tainted with a class action lawsuit concerning the Rock ‘n Play Sleeper. This Fisher-Price product is allegedly responsible for over 30 infant deaths. On April 12, two weeks before the class action lawsuit was filed in Buffalo, NY, Fisher-Price issued a recall of 4.7 million Rock ‘n Play Sleepers.
Since the product’s debut in 2009, Fisher-Price advertised the sleeper as a product to be used for long naps or overnight slumber. Due to the 30-degree angle of the seat, claimants argue that the sleeper is apparently unsafe to use for a prolonged period of time, and may result in suffocation or death. The incline itself enhances the chance of the infant’s head moving into a position that may potentially block airflow.
Due to this risk of the child’s mouth coming in contact with the fabric of the sleeper and constricting airway passages, the Consumer Product Safety Commission urged parents to stop using the product when their child turns 3 years old. Similarly, the Academy of Pediatrics has insisted that children should not be left alone to sleep in an inclined position. As a result of these two warnings from acclaimed organizations, claimants of the class action argue that Fisher-Price was fully aware of the dangers associated with the sleeper but chose to ignore them. Fisher-Price’s decision to continue manufacturing a life-threatening product highlights the company’s negligence.
As of now, two class action lawsuits are filed, one for the state of New York, and the other for nationwide claimants. One family, whose child died from using the sleeper, is pushing to expand compensation to two different classes, one for those who purchased the Rock ‘n Play Sleeper, and the other for those who suffered through the tragedy of losing their infant child.