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From Products Liability Law Daily, June 14, 2013

CPSC, Baby Matters LLC Settle Administrative Litigation

By Joseph Bichl

Baby Matters LLC of Berwyn, Pennsylvania, announced a recall of all models of its Nap Nanny and Nap Nanny Chill infant recliners and covers, settling an extended confrontation with the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) over the products’ safety (In the Matter of Baby Matters, LLC, CPSC Docket No. 13-1, May 20, 2013; CPSC News Release, No. 13-216, June 14, 2013). The recall is part of the settlement of an administrative complaint filed by CPSC in December 2012, which sought a mandatory recall of the Nap Nanny and Chill products.

Background. The agency has received 92 incident reports involving the Nap Nanny and Nap Nanny Chill products—including five infant deaths—from 2009 to the present. Four infants have died in Nap Nanny Generation Two recliners and a fifth died in the Chill model, CPSC indicated. The other incidents involved infants hanging or falling over the side of the products, including some infants who were restrained in the product’s harness.

In July 2010, CPSC and Baby Matters announced a recall that would provide an $80 coupon to Generation One owners toward the purchase of a newer model with improved instructions and warnings to consumers who owned the Generation Two model of Nap Nanny recliners. At the time of the July 2010 recall, CPSC was aware of one death that had occurred in a Nap Nanny recliner and 22 reports of infants hanging or falling out over the side of the Nap Nanny even though most of the infants had been placed in the harness. However, despite improvements to the warnings and instructions resulting from the recall, the subsequent deaths and incidents spurred the agency to press the matter further.

Administrative complaint. In December 2012, CPSC staff filed an administrative complaint against Baby Matters, alleging that the Nap Nanny Generation One and Two, and Chill model infant recliners contained defects in the design, warnings, and instructions, which the agency claimed posed a substantial risk of injury and death to infants. In the same month, four major retailers—Amazon.com, Buy Buy Baby, Diapers.com, and Toys R Us/Babies R Us—recalled the Nap Nanny and Chill models sold in their stores.

The agency’s complaint against Baby Matters sought an order requiring that the company notify the public of the defects and offer consumers a full refund. CPSC filed the complaint after discussions with the company and its representatives failed to result in an adequate voluntary recall plan that would address the hazard posed by consumer use of the product in a crib or without the harness straps being securely fastened.

Settlement agreement. Last month, CPSC and Baby Matters reached a settlement agreement that included the recall announced today and ended the legal proceeding against the company. The settlement resolved CPSC’s allegations that the Nap Nanny and Chill products created a substantial product hazard. Baby Matters disputed these allegations but agreed to the recall in consideration for dismissal of the CPSC lawsuit.

About 165,000 of the Nap Nanny and Chill products were sold between 2009 and 2012 for about $130. The recalled products were sold at toy and children's retail stores nationwide and online, including at http://www.napnanny.com. CPSC urged consumers to stop using the Nap Nanny and Nap Nanny Chill recliners immediately. Baby Matters LLC is no longer in business and is not accepting returns, the agency stated.

Companies: Baby Matters LLC; Amazon.com; Buy Buy Baby; Diapers.com; Toys R Us/Babies R Us

MainStory: TopStory ChildrensProductsNews

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