Tennessee Product Liability Law: Dangerous Children’s Clothing
Parents typically tend to put a great amount of consideration into the products with which they clothe their children. Their focus often remains on important factors such as comfort, style, age appropriateness, weather-readiness, and price of the clothing, but another essential factor parents need to take into consideration is its safety.
Reports from the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) have shown that nursery products and children’s clothing make up over 50% of reported injuries and children’s product recalls in the U.S. At InjuryTN, our child injury attorneys know that in recent years, numerous children’s product recalls for clothing have popped up across the country, which makes up more than 25% all recalls on child products.
The most commonly reported dangers in regards to children’s clothing included some of the following:
- Asphyxiation and choking hazards
- Flammable clothing that creates a burn hazard
- Swallowing button batteries
- Strangulation by hoods or drawstrings
- Falling if shoes don’t have good grip
- Back, neck, or shoulder injury from an ill fitting or overstuffed backpack
Numerous clothing brands and lines are made to cut costs and increase production, which, in light of how fast children tend to grow out of their clothes, does not sound quite so illogical. Nonetheless, manufacturers and distributors should always ensure the safety of the products they are providing for children
Recently, the CPSC has been applying strict enforcement to cases involving the sellers and makers of clothing who fail to initiate recalls, report injuries, and straighten out any other issues in a timely manner. Some of the more
Risks Posed by Drawstrings on Children’s Clothing
One of the more recent issues to come about in the past two decades is the drawstrings on children’s clothing. The CPSC initially started issuing warnings which notified consumers of the risks and hazards which drawstrings posed to children in the early ’90s, but it was 1996 when they issued specific regulations regarding upper outerwear in children’s clothing. That very next year, these regulations would provide major contributions to voluntary industry standards.
Nearly ten years later, they made the announcement that any children’s upper outerwear which has a hood or drawstrings around the neck would be deemed defective due to the inherent risk of injury they pose to children. Then after 5 years, federal guidelines were established which officially designated all children’s upper outerwear having drawstrings, ranging in sizes from extra-small to large (or 2T to 12) to be defective. This included any hoods as well as drawstrings around the neck, in addition to bottom or waist drawstrings.
In recent years, the agency identified more than 20 fatalities and almost 40 injuries which were directly caused by drawstrings on the children’s clothing. Included in the most prevalent of these situations were incidents where a drawstring got caught on playground equipment such as slides or monkey bars. Accidents of this nature have the potential to result in strangulation and even fatality. Accidents involving drawstrings being caught in school bus doors have also been reported frequently.
Although the regulations are very concise, some entities continue to disregard blatantly them. Reports from the CPSC have indicated that more than 500,000 units of children’s clothing which had been produced in China were recalled throughout the course of two years due to the use of drawstrings. Moreover, nearly 50 companies have received fines exceeding $10 million for their violation of drawstring-related regulations.
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Other Risks of Injury in Children’s Clothing
Another primary concern with children’s clothing is the hazard of choking on small pieces. Regulations from the CPSC require manufacturers of clothing who design buttons, zippers, pom-poms, and other decorative items on clothing to ensure they are securely fastened to the piece of clothing. If companies fail to adhere to these regulations, their product poses the threat of a choking hazard to consumers.
Among the most common concerns risk injury in child clothing is the use or presence of lead. The CPSC has placed restrictions on the sum total of lead content in children’s clothing not to exceed 100 ppm in any item of clothing that was produced after 2011. The most common items which contain trace amounts of lead may include decorative items, zippers, coated leather, crystal, and vinyl. All of which would need to be thoroughly tested and evaluated by third-parties prior to their distribution.
Lastly, children’s clothing also pose the hazard of catching or starting a fire. A company’s inability to meet flammability standards is among the most prevalent of cited reasons why units of children’s clothing are recalled. Specific types of fabrics should’t be used when manufacturing clothing at all due to their inherent nature of quickly catching fire.
Get in Touch with Our Product Liability Attorneys
If your child has sustained an injury because of dangerous children’s clothing, you should contact our experienced team of product liability attorneys today. In the event of a serious accident involving dangerous children’s clothing, time is of the essence. You need the assistance of professional product liability lawyers with decades of experience to protect your rights and fight for your best interest. Contact our office by phone at (615) 640-HURT or fill out an online contact form to schedule your free initial consultation to discuss your rights. All personal injury cases are taken on a contingency basis, so there are only fees and costs if we win your case.