Mattel and Fisher-Price toys and baby equipment are at the centre of a mass product recall for safety reasons. Here’s what you need to know, and how to find out if your items are affected.
Fisher-Price toys and baby gear, such as highchairs, are being recalled in the UK. This is part of a broader recall, led by the USA after injuries were reported there. So what do UK parents need to know?
Firstly, in America, the term “recall” can mean something a little different to what we’d initially assume in the UK. Yes, it can mean an item needs to be replaced entirely, but it can also mean that you just need to stop using the item until a free repair kit is sent to you. The first thing is to stop using the item you think is affected, then contact Fisher-Price to confirm if that is actually the case. Fisher-Price can then explain what happens next.
Secondly, you might hear two brand names used - Mattel and Fisher-Price. Fisher-Price’s parent company is Mattel, so you’ll see both these names used to refer to the items at times.
This is an overview of affected items, but the company’s own site has specific details and images to help you determine if your items are part of the recall.
Sold in major retailers from September 2001 through to September 2010. The number of products affected in the UK is about 72,763.
Children can fall on or against the tray storage pegs on the rear legs of the highchair, resulting in injury.
You can determine whether or not your highchair is affected by locating the model number on the back of the seat and checking the website. Stop using the highchair immediately and contact Fisher-Price on 0800 0320 615 to arrange for instructions and a free repair kit.
Sold in all major retailers from July 2001 through to July 2008. The number of products affected in the UK is around 165,090.
The Shake & Rattle Monkey Ball, Shake & Chime Ducky Ball and Bat & Wobble Penguin are NOT affected by the recall.
The valve of the inflatable ball can come off, posing a choking hazard.
Immediately remove the inflatable ball from the product (but don’t discard it since it will need to be returned to Fisher-Price), keep it away from children and contact Fisher-Price for a free repair kit or voucher.
Sold at mass retailers nationwide from April 2010 through to September 2010. The number of products affected in the UK is approximately 6,107.
The wheels can come off, releasing small parts that may pose a choking hazard to young children.
Immediately stop using the affected vehicles and contact Fisher-Price to arrange for free replacement vehicles. In the meantime, other Wheelies vehicles may be used with the Rampway.
MFM spoke with Mattel in the UK to find out what prompted the move. Mattel says it works closely with the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), a government body in the USA that acts as a watchdog for the safety of consumer products. When a customer complaint is made to the CPSC, Mattel and the CPSC will monitor the situation over time to see if the issue was a one-off or if perhaps it’s a design problem or other scenario that prompts them to take action.
According to reports, there have been a number of injuries in America, and so a recall is happening. As Mattel is a global brand, action is being taken here in the UK, too. However, not all the products sold in America are stocked in the UK.
Call Fisher-Price on 0800 0320 615 and head to the website for detailed info. You’ll find specifics, such as model numbers and images, plus an explanation of the possible risks and the action you should take.
In a statement to the media, Fisher-Price said: “We want to reassure parents that our products are overwhelmingly safe. We operate in a highly regulated industry and we test our products at many stages during development and production. Our product engineers have many years of experience in designing safe toys. In addition, we monitor parents’ safety-related reports over time. If we see an issue with a product at any point, even after many have been sold and used safely, we take appropriate action. “Our actions reflect our continuing commitment to the safety of our products. Hundreds of millions of our products are used safely every day and we believe these simple fixes will continue that excellent record.”
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