A popular child's play seat is coming under fire by safety advocates, who say it does not stand up to the minimum standards needed to prevent child injury in Alabama.
It's called the Bumbo Baby Sitter, though parents should take heed that the seat should never be used while the child is unattended.
While there hasn't been an official recall of the seat since 2007, a number of media outlets are reporting that the seats have been known to have involvement in a number of skull fractures in small children.
Our Birmingham personal injury attorneys know that five years ago, the child seat was recalled because there was no warning label telling parents not to use the seats on a raised surface.
Still, even after a warning was printed on the side of the seats, injuries continue to happen - sometimes with parents seated right next to their small children.
The Bumbo seats are made by Bumbo International, a company based in South Africa. Bumbo maintains that the chairs are safe when used the way they are intended.
There have been more than 50 reports to the Consumer Products Safety Commission of infants who fell out of the Bumbo seat even when the chair was on the floor. One of those infants suffered a concussion, and two had skull fractures.
All total, at least 17 infants have fallen victim to serious head injuries while being seated in the Bumbo. Of those, 14 occurred in seats that had the new warning label printed.
For those who may not have seen these seats, they a popular item on baby gift registries. According to San Francisco ABC 7 News, about 4 million of these seats have been sold in the U.S. The design of the seat allows even small infants to sit upright, and is made of foam. There are no straps in the chair, which is molded to allow the child to sit unrestricted.
However, this lack of restraints is apparently part of the problem.
Now for the second time in five years, the government is warning that these seats may pose a significant danger to small children. Some child safety advocates want the product removed from the market entirely. No recall has been issued, but a spokesman for the Consumer Product Safety Commission was quoted by the California news station as saying that it is a definite concern as a potential hazard, simply because of the number of children who have been hurt using it.
In one instance, the father of an infant said he had placed the baby in the Bumbo seat on the kitchen table, and sat down right next to him. The father said his son arched his back, the Bumbo seat tilted and the boy fell onto the floor, cracking his head on the tile floor.
The baby was taken by helicopter to a nearby hospital, where he had to undergo emergency surgery to save his life.
The boy did eventually recover, though his parents continue to monitor his development for signs of permanent brain damage.