Fisher-Price, US regulators warn of infant deaths in rockers

Consumers are encouraged to report incidents involving these or other infant products to CPSC at

ByNydia Han and Heather Grubola WPVI logo
Tuesday, June 14, 2022
Fisher-Price, US regulators warn of infant deaths in rockers
A new law called "The Safe Sleep for Babies Act" has made it illegal to sell two dangerous infant products.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Fisher-Price and U.S. product safety regulators are telling parents not to let their infants fall asleep in the company's rockers after 13 infants died in the devices between 2009 and 2021.

The deaths happened when the babies fell asleep in Fisher Price's Infant-to-Toddler and Newborn-to-Toddler rockers. The company, along with U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, said the rockers should never be used for sleep and infants should never be left unsupervised or unrestrained in them.

Fisher-Price, a division of El Segundo, California-based Mattel Inc., recalled a similar product last year after four infants died after they were placed on their backs unrestrained in the 4-in-1 Rock 'n Glide Soother. Those fatalities, all children under 4 months old, occurred between April 2019 and February 2020.

A new law called "The Safe Sleep for Babies Act" has made it illegal to sell two dangerous products, but there are others not covered by the legislation, and parents need to stay away from them.

"I'm grateful to our lawmakers for helping us protect babies when the manufacturers won't," said mom Sara Thompson.

Thompson's 15-week-old son Alexander died while in a Fisher-Price Rock 'n Play Sleeper back in 2011. It was on the market for a decade before it was finally recalled in 2019 after a Consumer Reports investigation revealed dozens of deaths tied to it and other infant inclined sleepers.

The design of the products, specifically their incline, makes them inherently dangerous for infant sleep.

Last month, President Joe Biden signed into law The Safe Sleep for Babies Act, which officially bans inclined sleepers and crib bumper pads, both of which are unsafe for infant sleep and together have been linked with close to 200 reported deaths.

"This legislation is an absolutely critical step to help parents and caregivers keep their babies out of unsafe sleep environments," said Consumer Reports Safety Advocate Oriene Shin.

But be aware there are products marketed for sleep, not covered by the act, that also don't conform to pediatricians' recommendations for how babies should be put to bed.

They include infant hammocks and in-bed sleepers.

"There is no place on store shelves or online for infant products that fail to align with expert safe sleep guidelines," said Shin.

Later this year, a strong federal rule covering infant sleep products goes into effect, but until that happens, CR is urging parents to stop using anything that does not follow best safe sleep practices.

"I know that Alexander is looking down from heaven and happy that we've worked so hard to prevent any more infant deaths in inclined sleepers," said Thompson.

Babies should sleep alone on their backs on a firm, flat surface without any soft objects or bedding in a product covered by federal standards, such as cribs, play yards, and bassinets.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.