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June 8, 2010

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Cribs found to hold hidden hazards

SOME baby cribs for sale in local hypermarkets contain a potentially dangerous design flaw that may keep worried parents awake at night, according to recent inspection by the local consumer-rights watchdog.

In the faulty cribs, the gap between the bedding area and the bed head is too wide; babies' arms and legs could get stuck there.

The Shanghai Commission of Consumers' Rights and Interests Protection tested 16 brands of baby cribs, and found that seven of them had the problem.

So far the commission has not received any reports of injuries nor consumers' complaints about the cribs, officials said.

Most of the questionable products were produced by companies in China outside Shanghai. The only one made in Shanghai was a Japanese-style beech baby crib by Shanghai Piyopiyo Trading Co Ltd. That crib had a gap more than 10 millimeters wider than the country's standard regulates.

The company said that model was produced before the country had a standard for baby cribs and is now seldom sold in the market. All later models have strictly adhered to the standard, the company said. "As far as I concern, the questioned type of beds are only for display, but not for sale," said an official surnamed Yang.

The Ximengbao baby crib produced by Zhangzhou Xiyingmen Furniture Co Ltd, and Colorlife pine baby crib produced by Shenzhen Colorlife Furniture Co Ltd were among the makes with similar problems, according to the inspection.

The commission has reported the inspection results to local industrial and commercial authorities, who may take further action.

"As the commission doesn't have right to order companies to recall the products or markets to move the products off shelves, we will hand over the affair to the government," said Lu Xueqin, an official with the commission.

Usually the government will retest the products and level a penalty if necessary.


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