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Safety Tips From The Consumer Product Safety Commission

Apr 6, 2008
The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission is a government agency that is charged with the job of protecting the consumer from injuries or death as the result of faulty consumer products. This agency has set up guidelines to ensure that products that you may want to purchase for your baby are safe. By doing a few simple checks you can provide your baby with the safest environment possible.

When purchasing a back carrier, there are several items that you should check to ensure that you have chosen a carrier that will be safe for your child. You should check to make sure that the style that you have chosen has a restraining strap to secure your child. You should also check the leg holes to ensure that they are small enough to prevent the baby from slipping out but large enough to prevent chafing on the baby's legs. The frame of the carrier should have no pinch points, and should have a padded covering in the area around the baby's face. As long as the carrier that you want to purchase has met all these requirements, you should have no problems with it in the future.

Many parents purchase bassinets or cradles for their babies. The Commission also has a checklist for these pieces of furniture. The base of these items should be wide for stability and the bottom should be sturdy. All the surfaces of the cradle or bassinet should be smooth with no protruding hardware or staples that could injure the child. If the furniture folds, the leg locks must be strong enough to prevent folding while in use. Finally, the mattress in the cradle or bassinet must fit snugly to prevent the baby from sliding in between the mattress and the side. By completing this checklist, you should be able to purchase the safest cradle or bassinet possible.

High chairs are another popular piece of baby furniture. When purchasing a chair, the Commission suggests that you purchase a style that has a waist and crotch strap that are independent of the tray and that the tray locks should also be secure. The agency also suggests that the buckle on the waist strap should be easy to use and the base of the high chair should be wide to ensure its stability. It suggests that you check the caps or plugs on any tubing to make sure that they are firmly attached and that they cannot be removed by a child who can choke on them. Finally, if it is a folding chair, you should make sure that the legs locks are strong enough to prevent the chair from accidently folding up. By ensuring that a high chair meets all these requirements, you should be able to buy one that will last you for years.

These are just a few of the many products the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission has evaluated. Although you may think that their checklists are time-consuming, you should realize that all the recommendations made by the agency were the results of a complaint or an injury sustained because of a particular flaw with the product. By using the agency's guidelines, you can be assured of purchasing the safest items possible for your baby
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