Fisher-Price Rock ’n Play Responsibility for Baby Deaths Class Action

The nearly-three-month-old daughter of plaintiffs in this case died within a few minutes of being placed in a Rock ’n Play Sleeper, says the complaint for this class action. It brings suit against Fisher-Price, Inc., Mattel, Inc., and Amazon.com, Inc., claiming that the companies knew that the Rock ’n Play was dangerous but continued selling the product.

A class and a subclass have been proposed for this action.

  • The Consumer Class is all persons in the US and its territories who bought or received a defective Rock ’n Play made or sold by a defendant in this case.
  • The Injury Subclass is all children in the US and its territories who experienced injury or death as a result of the defective design of a Rock ’n Play made or sold by a defendant in this case, and the parents of such children.

The Rock ’n Play is an “inclined sleeper,” with padded inserts that go behind and up to the sides of the baby’s head and body. The child lies in a semi-seated, inclined position. 

The complaint points out two problems with the Rock ’n Play: “(1) its shape permits infants to move themselves into a position in which they are unable to breathe against the padded surface of the Rock ’n Play; and (2) the degree of incline of the sleep environment causes infants’ heads to pitch at angles which impair breathing and increase the risk of neck and head injuries.”

The complaint quotes statements from Fisher-Price that implies that the Rock ’n Play is safe:

  • “The inclined seat helps your baby sleep all night.”
  • “Inclined sleeper designed for all-night sleep.”
  • “Soft fabric & a supportive sleep back helps keep baby elevated & secure.”

But the complaint says that the companies were disregarding recommendations from the American Association of Pediatrics (AAP) for sleeping position for an infant—on its back, on a firm surface, and not next to “soft objects,” including pillows, bumper pads, and positioners. In 2011, the AAP said that “Infants who are younger than 4 months are particularly at risk, because they might assume positions that can create the risk of suffocation or airway obstruction.”

In fact, the complaint says, the Rock ’n Play was originally marketed as a bassinet, until the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) changed the requirements for bassinets because of incidents of “suffocation/positional asphyxia due to excess mattress pad angle” and “suffocation due to excess rock/swing angles.”

Authorities or organizations in Australia, Canada, and the UK found that the Rock ’n Play was only safe for short periods, and for play but not sleeping.

Still, the companies continued to claim the product was safe. However, the complaint says Consumer Reports disclosed that “the Rock ’n Play contributed to at least thirty-two deaths since its release.”

The Rock ’n Play was finally recalled on April 12, 2019—after it had been on the market for roughly ten years.

The complaint alleges negligent design, negligent misrepresentation, fraud, and fraudulent concealment, among other things.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer

Most Recent Case Event

Fisher-Price Rock ’n Play Responsibility for Baby Deaths Complaint

April 18, 2019

The nearly-three-month-old daughter of plaintiffs in this case died within a few minutes of being placed in a Rock ’n Play Sleeper, says the complaint for this class action. It brings suit against Fisher-Price, Inc., Mattel, Inc., and Amazon.com, Inc., claiming that the companies knew that the Rock ’n Play was dangerous but continued selling the product.

fisher_price_rockn_play_death_complaint.pdf

Case Event History

Fisher-Price Rock ’n Play Responsibility for Baby Deaths Complaint

April 18, 2019

The nearly-three-month-old daughter of plaintiffs in this case died within a few minutes of being placed in a Rock ’n Play Sleeper, says the complaint for this class action. It brings suit against Fisher-Price, Inc., Mattel, Inc., and Amazon.com, Inc., claiming that the companies knew that the Rock ’n Play was dangerous but continued selling the product.

fisher_price_rockn_play_death_complaint.pdf
Tags: Baby or Child Seat, Injuries or Death