Children of all ages are at risk of injury from wearing defective clothing that does not comply with the federal standard regulations. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has set forth federal standard regulations regarding the manufacturing and sale of children’s clothing, including standards on flammability, lead content, small parts, and drawstrings. In addition, certain label requirements must also be met. If any federal standards set forth by the CPSC are not complied with in the manufacturing and sale of a children’s garment, the product is subject to recall.
Numerous children’s clothing items have been recalled in recent years, primarily as a result of the federal standard regulations set forth by the CPSC concerning the manufacturing and sale of children’s clothing. Children’s clothing can pose a variety of risks, including the risk of small parts such as rhinestones or snaps that may detach and pose a choking hazard, flammability requirements not being met, or lead paint being used in the design that exceeds government standard levels regulated by law. One of the greatest hazards in children’s clothing is drawstrings, as they have been linked to a number of injuries and deaths in recent years.
The CPSC received reports of at least 27 deaths of children in connection with drawstrings on children’s clothing from 1985 to 2008, as well as 70 non-fatal incidents.
Examples of defective children’s clothing that has been recalled include:
DMF Sales of New York, New York, recalled approximately 18,300 boys’ fleece and flannel zip hooded sweatshirts with drawstrings as a result of a strangulation hazard. The hooded sweatshirts were not in compliance with CPSC federal standard regulations regarding the manufacturing of children’s clothing. These sweatshirts, with brand name “Bay Trading,” were sold exclusively at Burlington Coat Factory between September 2006 and October 2009.
In 2009, Little Miss Matched Inc. of New York, New York, recalled the Little Miss Matched Girls’ pajama sets because they failed to meet flammability regulations as set forth by the CPSC for children’s sleepwear. About 7,000 units were recalled in the U.S., and approximately 288 were recalled in Canada. Long sleeve girl’s and toddler’s pajama sets were included in this recall. The pajamas were available in black, pink, or white with stripes and polka dots. The pajama sets were sold through various retailers from March 2008 to November 2009 in Canada, and March 2008 to July 2009 nationwide.
C&J Clark America Inc. of Newton, Massachusetts, recalled approximately 2,000 units of “crawlers” and “hazy daze” children’s shoes as a result of a choking hazard posed to young children. Parts of the sole on the shoes can become detached. While there have been no reports received from the U.S., in the United Kingdom, six reports were received regarding this issue. In two of the instances, children were reported to have placed pieces of the rubber sole in their mouths.
Alpargatas USA Inc. of New York, New York, recalled approximately 210,000 units of children’s flip-flops as a result of a failure to comply with federal standard regulations regarding lead levels in products manufactured and sold for children. The decorative soles of the flip-flops contain lead paint at levels that are higher than the regulated standard mandated by the CPSC. The flip-flops were sold at specialty and department stores across the nation from November 2006 to February 2009.