Statistics reveal figures have fallen in England and Wales since 2009
The number of unexpected infant deaths has reached a new all-time low, reports the BBC.
Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that cot deaths across England and Wales have fallen from 279 in 2009 to 254 in 2010.
The number of babies dying from sudden infant death before the age of 1 has been falling steadily in recent years. The drop is largely attributed to the Back to Sleep campaign that was launched in 1991.
Although the exact cause of cot death is unknown, it is thought that overheating, an unsafe sleeping environment - such as sleeping in a bed with parents, and smoking could play a part.
Of the unexplained infant deaths in 2010, just over a third occurred in the winter months compared to 21% between June and August.
North-West England was shown to be the worst-hit region, with the highest rate for the past seven years. Francine Bates, chief exectuive of the Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths (FSID), described the figures in the region as "extremely concerning".
"We know that smoking is a major risk factor for sudden infant death... the smoking rate for the North West is above the national average," Francine said.
The FSID said that with the help of public health agencies, it hoped to furuther cut the numbers of deaths with the Reduce the Risk campaigns.
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