The parents of 1-year-old Landon James Zimmerman are suing Simplicity, SFCA Inc., and Hayneedle Inc. for wrongful death. Zimmerman allegedly died in a Massachusetts crib entrapment accident that caused him to suffocate. At the time, the toddler was using a Simplicity Ellis Deluxe 4-in-1 Convertible Sleep System crib.
Zimmerman’s death in 2008 prompted the Consumer Product Safety Commission to recall all Simplicity cribs with a mattress support frame constructed of tubular metal. The cribs were recalled because of the fall, entrapment, suffocation, and strangulation hazards they presented to toddlers and infants. The mattress-support frame was at risk of detaching or bending, which could cause a section of the mattress to collapse and possibly create an entrapment danger.
Simplicity and SFCA Inc., its successor company, are no longer in operation. Hayneedle is the retailer that sold the crib to Zimmerman’s family.
Crib entrapment can cause strangulation or suffocation, which can prove fatal for a baby or toddler. Crib manufacturers, retailers, and distributors can be held liable if a dangerous or defective crib causes serious injuries or death to a child.
Hopefully, with the stricter safety requirements that the CPSC has mandated and will go into effect later this year, there will be less child injuries and deaths caused by hazardous cribs. That said, it is still important that parents and guardians make sure they follow instructions on crib assembly and check to make sure that their crib hasn’t been recalled or doesn’t have any defects that could cause it to malfunction.