Following reports of two infant deaths, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is warning consumers to immediately stop using the Podster, Podster Plush, Bummzie and Podster Playtime (the “Podsters”) infant loungers manufactured by Leachco, Inc. of Ada, Oklahoma. The Commission has found that the public health and safety requires this notice to warn the public quickly of the hazard.
For decades, CPSC has emphasized that the best place for a baby to sleep is on a firm, flat surface in a crib, bassinet or play yard. Today’s consumer warning comes several months after a different brand of infant loungers was recalled. CPSC continues to investigate the Podsters and Leachco is refusing to conduct a voluntary recall of the product.
CPSC is aware of two infants who were placed on a Podster and suffocated when, due to a change in position, their noses and mouths were obstructed by the Podster or another object. The infants, 17-days old and four-months old, died in January 2018 and December 2015 in the U.S.
The Podsters measure between 71 and 75 inches in circumference and have dimensions of approximately 23.75 x 21.5 x 8 inches. They have a padded insert and a removable cover. The covers come in a variety of prints and are either 100% polyester or a cotton/polyester blend. The covers also contain an elastic center made of a nylon/spandex blend. Approximately 180,000 Podsters have been sold.
Infant loungers like Podsters are not safe for sleep. Babies should always be placed to sleep on their back. Babies who fall asleep in an inclined or upright position should be moved to a safe sleep environment. To follow safe sleep practices, parents and caregivers should use a fitted sheet only and never add blankets, pillows, padded crib bumpers, or other items to an infant’s sleeping environment.
CPSC intends to promptly consider other actions, including potential filing of an administrative complaint, to protect consumers from this hazard. Consumers are encouraged to report incidents from Podsters or other similar products to saferproducts.gov.