KID Report Card: U.S. scores low on child recall efforts
When it comes to child safety, the U.S. gets a bad grade.
Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan and the Illinois-based product safety advocacy group Kids In Danger released a new report Monday detailing product recalls nationwide in 2016 and the overall effectiveness of companies’ efforts to keep kids out of harm’s way.
According to the report, 66.8 million total units of children’s products were recalled in 2016, the largest number of recalled units since 2004. The report also cited a lack of changes in the recall process, which took an average of 64 reported incidents before manufacturers began pulling dangerous products from shelves last year. That’s compared to an average of 12 in 2015 and 5 in 2014. Though the number of children product recalls increased slightly from 2015, the number of single units jumped by 1,000 percent.
Madigan and KID claim that three products in particular were responsible for such a steep increase:
- Tommee Tippee Sippee Cups had over 3,000 reports of mold in the cups prior to recall along with 68 reports of illness from the mold.
- Pacific Cycle recalled two stroller models after 132 incidents – resulting in 215 injuries – due to injuries to both children and caregivers.
- Hillsdale Furniture had 650 reports of the side mattress support rails cracking or breaking prior to recall.
The silver lining may be that 2016 marked the first year in which no cribs were recalled, something KID described as a “major feat,” despite nursery products accounting for 32 percent of recalls. Also, more companies appear to be reaching out to consumers via social media to inform them about potential recalls, as well as ways to receive refunds and safety kits. The report found that at least 59 percent of companies with a Facebook account reached out to consumers shortly after a recall.
The data compiled by Madigan and KID was determined by examining children’s products that have been recalled by the U.S Consumer Product Safety Commission.
As always, KID recommends that parents be more diligent about checking products and spreading the word about faulty features.