Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat Recall Raises Questions about Seat's Marketing PhotosOct 26, 2007 | Parker Waichman LLP
Seats That Had Been Placed on Raised Surfaces.
The Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat marketing campaign used photos that showed babies in seats that had been placed on raised surfaces. Now it seems that those pictures left many parents with a false sense of security. That’s because these photographs of the Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat in action led many consumers to believe that their children could not fall from the infant seat regardless of where it was placed – an assumption that has proven tragically wrong.
The Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat, sold by Bumbo International of South Africa, is a soft foam chair that is supposed to allow infants to sit upright without the aid of straps. It is designed with the seat lower than the leg openings so that children will remain secure. The Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) began investigating the Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat earlier this month, after several media outlets reported on children who were severely injured after falling from the seat. These reports included two children from Kansas and California who suffered from skull fractures after falling out of a Bumbo Seat.
The children who sustained the most serious injuries from the Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat had been in the infant seat when it was placed on a counter or some other raised surface. Now it appears that Bumbo International’s marketing efforts may have confused parents about the proper way in which to use the Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat. While the Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat does have a small warning label that says “never use on a raised surface”, some of its marketing materials send a different message. These materials say the chair is safe on “any level surface”, and some of the pictures used by the company show children sitting in the Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat on a raised surface. The website also showed pictures of babies in the seat on a picnic table and playing the piano. Some of those pictures were removed from the website after reports of Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat accidents were publicized, but by then, at least 28 children had fallen from the Bumbo seat and three had suffered skull fractures.
CPSC to Recall Bumbo Baby Sitter Seats.
Those injuries have prompted the CPSC to recall about 1 million Bumbo Baby Sitter Seats. The recalled Bumbo Baby Sitter Seats were sold in various retail, toy and children’s stores nationwide, and online, from August 2003 through October 2007 for about $40. The bottom of the Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat is round and flat and about 15 inches in diameter. The Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat is made of a single piece of molded foam, and comes in the colors yellow, blue, purple, pink, aqua, and lime. On the front of the seat in raised lettering is the word “Bumbo” with the image of an elephant. The bottom of the seat has the following words: “Manufactured by Bumbo South Africa Material: Polyurethane World Patent No. PCT: ZA/1999/00030.”
The CPSC is warning caregivers not to use the Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat on any raised surface. Anyone who purchased a Bumbo Baby Sitter Seat should contact Bumbo for a new warning sticker that reads “WARNING – Prevent Falls; Never use on any elevated surface.” Those warning stickers will also be added to all Bumbo Baby Sitter Seats sold in the future. Bumbo International can be contacted by calling (877) 932-8626 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or by visiting the firm’s Web site at www.bumbosafety.com
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