Five years ago, the government ordered the makers of Bumbo Baby Seats to attach a warning to their product. The seats, used to hold infants in sitting positions, were causing falls and injuries among babies who were placed in them on raised surfaces like table tops. Officials believed that consumers needed more safety guidance to use the products.
Injuries caused by the defective products grew. The Consumer Product Safety Commission learned that more than 50 infants fell from Bumbo Baby Seats after the 2007 warning was issued. Some of the incidents happened because parents in Boston and around the country disregarded the height-use warning. However, nearly three dozen cases involved children injured when the seats were used at ground level.
Nine months ago, the CPSC again warned parents that falls from Bumbo Baby Seats could cause serious child injuries. But the public announcement was not enough warning, according to safety advocates. Under pressure from consumer groups, the government recently ordered the recall of four million Bumbo seats sold in the U.S.
Bumbo seats hold babies upright, but have no straps or harnesses to secure infants. The new government recall urges parents and other purchasers to stop using the seats on any surface until a safety belt is installed. Product owners can contact the South African manufacturers of Bumbo Baby Seats to receive a free seat belt attachment for the product.
Some parents whose children have been hurt after falls from Bumbo Baby Seats have already filed lawsuits against the product maker. Many more lawsuits are expected. Bumbo seats, priced at up to $50, have been on the market for nearly a decade and are very popular.
Source: Boston Globe, “4 million Bumbo Baby Seats recalled,” Mitch Lipka, Aug. 15, 2012