The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission raised a great deal of eyebrows two weeks ago when it announced that four major retailers had voluntarily agreed to recall more than 150,000 Nap Nanny children’s recliners. Manufactured by Baby Matters LLC, these Nap Nanny recliners had been the subject of an investigation by the CPSC after at least 22 reports of children falling from the seats, and Baby Matters officials admitted during a 2010 recall of approximately 30,000 seats that the company was aware of one death that had been linked to the Nap Nanny. Since then, though, at least four more deaths have been associated with these chairs, resulting in this major recall.
Involved in the CPSC’s announcement were Amazon, Buy Buy Baby, Diapers.com and Toys R Us, as it was reported that Baby Matters “is unable or unwilling to participate in the recall.” This was just the third time in 11 years that the CPSC had declared a mandatory recall, as standard recalls are usually joint efforts between the commission and the manufacturers. Now, because this is such a unique situation, officials from Baby Matters are seeking a dismissal of this recall, because they believe that it is “a vehicle to give the commission leverage to strong-arm a complete recall without having to prove its case,” according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Most notably, Baby Matters founder Leslie Gudel has taken umbrage with this statement from the CPSC’s recall report: “It is illegal to attempt to sell or resell this or any other recalled product.” In a statement from Gudel and Baby Matters, the company insists that such a statement is “materially false, misleading and deceptive” and that such a statement only applies to products that require a voluntary corrective action. The CPSC corrected its original release in this regard; however, stated the Baby Matters complaint: “In an apparent intentional act to manipulate the news cycle, the commission waited until approximately 6:30 p.m. to correct its on-line version of the press release – after the news of the press release had achieved maximum impact.”
As with any complaint, according to Consumerist, the CPSC will “will be responding to the Nap Nanny’s filing as appropriate and any response will be available for viewing on the public docket.”