More than 2.2 million bean bags made by Ace Bayou Corp. are being recalled after two children suffocated to death inside of them. The bean bags, which come in various shapes, colors, fabrics and sizes, were sold at popular stores such as Walmart and Meijer, and online at Amazon. Child product recall lawyers at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm detail this recall and how consumers should fix the defects.
Ace Bayou is located in New Orleans, and sold the recalled bean bag chairs until July 2013, for anywhere between $30 and $100. The two children that died from these chairs, a three year old from Kentucky and a 13 year old from Texas, were found by their families inside the bean bags, suffocated, with foam beads in their mouths and lungs.
The defective bean bags include zipper than can easily be opened, which is how the children crawled into the bean bags in the first place. As mentioned, the bags were sold at many popular stores, including:
¢ Meijer ¢ Walmart ¢ Amazon.com ¢ Pamida ¢ Bon-Ton ¢ School Specialty ¢ Wayfair
Anyone who owns an Ace Bayou bean bag should contact the company right away and keep the chairs away from children of any age. Ace Bayou is offering its customers free repair kits that will prevent the zippers from opening, which can be ordered online.
Dozens of different kinds of children’s products are recalled throughout the country every month, however, most parents are never informed or aware of how dangerous these products are. One study by Kids in Danger found that just 10% of recalled children’s products were successfully corrected, returned, or replaced in 2012. We don’t see that dire number going up any time soon without serious intervention from multiple angles.
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Furniture is among the most common factors in accidental child injuries and deaths, which is why knowing about recalls and proper assembly is so important. Reporting injuries caused by defective products is also important: on average, it takes about 14 reported incidents and two injuries to initiate a product recall. Incidents, design flaws, and product failures can be submitted to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
In addition to monitoring current safety recalls, parents should keep in mind that products they find at thrift stores and second-hand shops may also be unknowingly dangerous. One child safety website notes that at least 12% of thrift and second-hand shops sells children’s products that were previously recalled or violate federal safety standards. We recently wrote a post on the effectiveness, or lack thereof, of children’s product recalls.
How Recalls Work, and Why They Rarely Do
The lack of awareness and enforcement is largely due to the failures in communication between manufacturers, retailers, consumers and the government. As we touched on earlier, in order for a recall to take place, consumers must report incidents to the government, which tracks these in a large database. When enough reports accrue, the government informs the manufactuer that a recall should be made (how seriously they recommend the recall depends on many circumstances). Once the manufacturer decides to issue a recall, it issues a press release and notifies retailers, such as Walmart, to take the product off their shelves and attempt to inform its customers.
Although they should, few people regularly check the CPSC website for recalls, or have updates automatically emailed to their inboxes. We strongly encourage all parents to sign up for a CPSC subscription, so you receive emails every time a recall involves infant or child products. This can be found here.
There have been several large-scale recalls already in 2014. Among them include Car Seats made by Graco (3.8 million) and Evenflo (1.3 million), Pacifier holding clips made by Playtex (1.2 million), and wall mounted lamps (3.5 million) and bed canopies (255,000) from Ikea. Graco also recalled nearly 2 million rear-facing child restraints recently.
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Some of the most dangerous kid’s toys include those with toxic substances, such as lead, those with small parts, those with powerful magnets, and those equipped with loud audio technology, that may adversely affect hearing, sometimes causing permanent damage. If your child was seriously injured by a defective product, or if you notice a children’s product that is defective or flawed in any way, it is critically important to report the incident right away.
Serious injuries to children can be devastating to families, particularly if they were caused by a negligently-designed or poorly-made product. Contact our team of children’s product recall lawyers as soon as possible if you have any questions or concerns about injuries or recalls. We always provide free, confidential, no-obligation consultations to concerned parents, nationwide.