WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal safety regulators are urging consumers to stop using baby pillows that have been linked to 10 infant deaths but are still being sold on Facebook Marketplace, despite being recalled two years ago.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said Tuesday that Boppy Newborn lounge chairs are no longer legally for sale, but it has found thousands of them on Facebook Marketplace since the 2021 recall began.
The agency wrote to Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Meta Platforms, Facebook’s parent company, on Tuesday to say it had repeatedly requested that items be removed from Marketplace. He cited Boppy lounge chairs as “a particularly egregious example” of a product that puts consumers at risk.
“Until these sales are stopped, the babies will continue to be in life-threatening condition,” CPSC Commissioner Richard Trumka said in a statement. He added that Meta “failed to take effective action” in response to the average of one thousand CPSC takedown requests made each month over the past year for Boppy lounge chairs.
The Boppy Co. recalled more than 3 million of its baby pillows due to a suffocation hazard in September 2021 – with reports of eight deaths associated with Boppy loungers between 2015 and 2020. The CSPC said Tuesday that two more babies died shortly after the recall began.
The CPSC is urging consumers to stop using the recalled loungers because babies can suffocate if they roll over, are placed on the lounger in a position that restricts breathing, or move off the infant pillow.
Meta’s online policy states that listings on Marketplace may not promote or sell recalled products and encourages users to check for current recalls before purchasing items. The company says Marketplace posts featuring recalled products are removed when identified.
“Like other platforms where people can buy and sell goods, there are instances where people knowingly or unknowingly sell recalled goods on Marketplace,” Meta said in a statement. “We take this issue seriously and when we find ads that violate our policies, we remove them.”
The CPSC said it has also made similar takedown requests to other used marketplaces online and for other recalled products, including the recalled Fisher Price Rock ‘n Play sleepers, which have also been linked. to infant deaths.
The recalled Boppy Loungers are Boppy Original Newborn Loungers, Boppy Preferred Newborn Loungers and Pottery Barn Kids Boppy Newborn Loungers. The products were sold online and at retailers nationwide, including Target and Walmart, between January 2004 and September 2021, according to the CPSC’s original recall notice. Consumers can contact The Boppy Company for a refund and for instructions on how to dispose of the products.
“The CPSC continues to emphasize that the best place for a baby to sleep is on a firm, level surface in a bassinet, bassinet or playground,” the agency said in its advisory Tuesday. “Parents and caregivers should never add blankets, pillows, padded bumpers or other items to a baby’s sleep environment. Babies should always be placed to sleep on their backs.
The Associated Press contacted The Boppy Co. for further comment on Tuesday.