Mother demands tougher safety laws after baby suffocates on crib bumper

Parents need more information on the dangers of padded crib bumpers, bereaved mother says

Bevan Hurley
Thursday 30 September 2021 23:21
Mother welcomes tougher safety laws on baby cribs
Leer en Español

A mother whose infant child suffocated after rolling into a padded crib bumper is welcoming new federal safety rules being introduced by the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Laura Maxwell told Good Morning America new legislation to ban the sale of padded bumper cribs that fail to meet airflow requirements was necessary to protect newborns.

Ms Maxwell’s son Preston was just seven weeks old when her husband Kyle discovered his motionless body in his crib in their Alaska home in 2010.

The couple performed CPR on Preston and called 911, but he could not be saved.

An autopsy report by the Alaska Medical Examiner found his cause of death was “asphyxia from the face being wedged between a crib bumper and mattress”.

They later sued the manufacturer and eventually reached a settlement.

Ms Maxwell said she had no idea of the dangers of the crib pads, and wants to see them banned outright.

“Moms don’t know this information,” she told GMA.

“This information is not out there, and I’m going to do whatever it takes so that not only are these companies held responsible, but people hear the stories.”

Since then, several studies have shown crib bumpers and other soft bedding increase the risk of sleep-related infant death

New laws due to come into effect this year will ban the sale, manufacture and importation of crib bumpers that fail to meet rigorous new safety guidelines.

Senator Tammy Duckworth introduced legislation to ban dangerous crib bumper pads

One of the bill’s co-sponsors, Senator Tammy Duckworth, said in a statement: “The fact that these deadly products can still be found on shelves across the country is extremely confusing to new parents who don’t believe stores would be selling them if they were truly dangerous to babies.”

Bipartisan legislation has been introduced to ban the sale of crib bumpers, which pediatricians have long said are unnecessary and pose a deadly risk to sleeping babies.

The Safe Cribs Act is expected to come into law later this year.

Dr Ben Hoffman, a professor of pediatrics at Oregon Health & Science University, said the safest place for a baby to sleep was on their back.

“On a firm, flat surface that is designed specifically for an infant without any soft bedding, which is bumpers, blankets, bears, anything that is in the sleep space that can serve as a suffocation or a strangulation risk.”

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments