Baby walkers are one of the most dangerous items in a household and should be banned in the U.S. as they are in Canada. Every year falls down stairs in baby walkers cause serious head injuries in babies under two. Not only that, but babies in walkers can move quickly, bump into sharp edges, grab electrical cords and tip over.
Of particular concern are cheap baby walkers that often are sold in discount stores. These walkers are narrower than more expensive versions and can fit through a standard doorway and lack other safety features that prevent falls down stairs. Some 8,400 of these cheap walkers were recalled in June, 2010, by the Consumer Product Commission. The walkers (no specific brand name), which sold for between $25 and $30, were sold in children’s stores in Texas, California, Illinois and New York between January 2007 and December 2009.
The recalled baby walkers have a plastic frame supported by four wheels and eight brake pads. The walkers were sold in blue, pink, and green, with a white activity tray and patterned vinyl seat. Item numbers WK110 or WK112 are printed on the side of the packaging. They were made in China and sold in the US through small stores that sell baby and children’s products.
Consumers should immediately stop using the walkers and return them to the store where purchased for a full refund. It is illegal to resell or attempt to resell this or any recalled consumer product. For additional information, contact Suntech Enterprises toll-free at (888) 268-8139 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. PT Monday through Friday.
While no injuries or deaths have been reported from these particular walkers, I represented a family whose 10-month-old daughter was seriously injured when her walker went through a doorway and down the stairs. Her mother had only looked away a few seconds. We successfully sued the company that sold the walkers, but I would much rather see these baby walkers banned than see another child hurt like this.
My client’s baby walker was identical to baby walkers that had been recalled by the government already for being patently unsafe, yet they were sold in stores that target low-income families.
In May 2010, the CPSC issued a new, mandatory rule on baby walkers that is effective on December 21, 2010. The walkers will then be required to either:
- Be too wide to fit through a standard doorway, or
- Have features, such as a gripping mechanism, to stop the walker at the edge of a step