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Old 05-08-2013, 08:06 AM   #1
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Can someone explain drop side crib dangers to me? And should I just buy a new one?

I bought a bedroom set for DD from a coworker. It's a very nice oak set and he threw in the matching crib that converts to a toddler bed for free. It's a drop side crib and at the time I wasn't concerned but now that I actually have dd I am afraid to put her in it. In fact she's 4 months old and never been in it.

I have googled and I just can't find a simple explanation for why they are unsafe. Can someone explain it to me?

Do you all think I should just purchase a different one?
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Old 05-08-2013, 08:21 AM   #2
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The problem I heard was the bottom of the drop side coming loose, causing children to slide between the side and the mattress and get injured or suffocate.

I have one from DD1 and the companies "fix" was to send us clips to prevent the side from moving, turning it into a fixed side.

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Old 05-08-2013, 08:21 AM   #3
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Re: Can someone explain drop side crib dangers to me? And should I just buy a new one

I think there is a part you can buy to make is safer. From what I learned, it's not the fact that it drops. The danger is, that the bottom part can open up and the baby can fall out and get caught between the mattress and rails.

http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2010/12...s-who-to-call/

There are other ways to immobilize the crib by yourself too.
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Old 05-08-2013, 08:41 AM   #4
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Re: Can someone explain drop side crib dangers to me? And should I just buy a new one

Not all drop sides are evil, but not all were created equal (thus the decision to discontinue making them.)
There were several design/manufacture flaws to be concerned about:
broken/missing parts
the drop side hardware breaking or coming detached from the crib (mostly happened with the plastic hardware, not metal)
the mattress support failing/breaking
less than simple instructions for assembly
and much older cribs may have had too wide spacing between mattress or crib slats

You can check online to see if your crib has ever had recalls or any safety kits designed after production. There are websites such as the Consumer Product Safety Commission, or the website of the manufacturer. You can also call the manufacturer.
Some cribs were simply given a "repair" kit. This should be shipped to you free of charge should you choose to keep the crib.

I have, and would continue to use, a drop side crib providing that there were no major recalls involved for that particular model. I am a person that feels I have a good grasp of common sense in safety and understands how to assemble things per manufacturer directions, but not everyone shares the same qualities.
So, personally Mama, I would contact the manufacturer so you understand the safety history with this crib. If it all checks out ok, I would personally use it, but that is your call to make. I also check for recalls on ALL used baby gear, not just cribs. Uniform precautions.
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Old 05-08-2013, 08:46 AM   #5
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Re: Can someone explain drop side crib dangers to me? And should I just buy a new one

And from what a PP mentioned, there are other ways to use or re-purpose the crib.
If the model allows, it could be save to use as a toddler, day, or adult bed.
Some cribs I understand could be placed like a side-car to your bed.
I have seen a lot of projects online on how to re-purpose cribs. Make them into shelves, furniture, child forts, etc. if you or a family member is handy like that.
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Old 05-08-2013, 10:42 AM   #6
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Re: Can someone explain drop side crib dangers to me? And should I just buy a new one

Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenHome Sewing View Post
Not all drop sides are evil, but not all were created equal (thus the decision to discontinue making them.)
There were several design/manufacture flaws to be concerned about:
broken/missing parts
the drop side hardware breaking or coming detached from the crib (mostly happened with the plastic hardware, not metal)
the mattress support failing/breaking
less than simple instructions for assembly
and much older cribs may have had too wide spacing between mattress or crib slats

You can check online to see if your crib has ever had recalls or any safety kits designed after production. There are websites such as the Consumer Product Safety Commission, or the website of the manufacturer. You can also call the manufacturer.
Some cribs were simply given a "repair" kit. This should be shipped to you free of charge should you choose to keep the crib.

I have, and would continue to use, a drop side crib providing that there were no major recalls involved for that particular model. I am a person that feels I have a good grasp of common sense in safety and understands how to assemble things per manufacturer directions, but not everyone shares the same qualities.
So, personally Mama, I would contact the manufacturer so you understand the safety history with this crib. If it all checks out ok, I would personally use it, but that is your call to make. I also check for recalls on ALL used baby gear, not just cribs. Uniform precautions.
Yes, to this. There are several issues with dropside cribs that caused them to be banned. As mentioned here, the bottom of the drop-side rail can come loose and swing out away from the crib, allowing baby to become stuck between the mattress and loose rail. Typically, this happens for a couple of reasons. Most common is that the crib is not put together properly. Occassionally, though, the plastic parts break or become loose. The easiest way to prevent this problem is to make absolutely sure that the crib is put together correctly. Also, with ANY crib, check the screws that hold it together regularly, making sure that they are all appropriately tight.

But the drop side is not the only issue. New cribs are more strongly made - some of the issues were caused by overly-energetic toddlers (or their slightly older siblings) jumping in the crib, causing the mattress support to break. The actual bars on the crib sides are also made stronger so they are less likely to break if the crib is used as a jungle gym.

Again, these issues are really, really rare - almost non-existent if you properly maintain the crib and use it as intended. The "repair kits" secure the lower edge of the drop side so it won't drop anymore. You can do the same thing yourself by getting a few long (around 4 inches) screws. Set the rail at the "up" position, then drill through the outside legs of the crib into the upper and lower bars of the drop side. You could do something similar so the mattress support won't drop out - even replacing it entirely with a solid wood base.

Like the above-poster, I would use our drop-side crib (which has no recalls) if we were to have another child. But if you have any concerns about yours, I'd say it's worth the peace of mind to replace it.
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Old 05-08-2013, 09:56 AM   #7
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Re: Can someone explain drop side crib dangers to me? And should I just buy a new one

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Originally Posted by escapethevillage View Post
I think there is a part you can buy to make is safer. From what I learned, it's not the fact that it drops. The danger is, that the bottom part can open up and the baby can fall out and get caught between the mattress and rails.
I think the dropping action itself has been a problem too - babies have kicked the sides down and gotten limbs caught, or fallen out after the side is down.
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Old 05-08-2013, 08:53 AM   #8
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Re: Can someone explain drop side crib dangers to me? And should I just buy a new one

There is also user error by leaving the side down with sleeping baby. If baby awaked and the side could move baby parts can get stuck in moving side parts - not good. Other user errors include using it when there are loose, worn, and broken parts. User error often causes all to go without. Like "walkers" with users that thought these were great to use on second floors, by steps, yards by road unattended and by bodies of water.

I happen to LOVE drop side cribs for the ease of putting in a sleepong baby. My old ones were very sturdy. Infact, they had thicker side rails and stayed together better (the need to tighten) than the DaVinci Emily crib I am currently using. Like all baby products, inspect for loose parts on occasion along with too much wear and broken parts mean to the curb. If any crib is in poor shape, wobbley etc do not use it regardless of drop sides.
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Old 05-08-2013, 08:56 AM   #9
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I have a drop side but I think its been "fixed" because I've never been able to drop the side. I got it at a garage sale about 3 years ago. Two of my babies have used it and I've never had any issues.
I genuinely don't understand how a baby can get stuck between the side and mattress (again, I'm genuinely confused)? There is no space between the side and mattress in my crib.
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Old 05-08-2013, 10:04 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Ashsmama
I genuinely don't understand how a baby can get stuck between the side and mattress (again, I'm genuinely confused)? There is no space between the side and mattress in my crib.
The one I had that was recalled had plastic guides on the bottom. If you didn't get the side exactly on those guides the whole side could pop off or just one side could if you got one side and not the other meaning the baby could potentially get stuck between the mattress and the crib side. It would flex to allow the baby in but the baby wouldn't be strong enough to get out of it. Not to mention if you don't get the rail on the guides properly and the side completely fell off and baby can fall out of the crib and land on the crib side. Add to this risk the bumper pads and you have a recipe for disaster. Eta- added pic

OP- I would look into returning it to either TRU or Target of possible and otherwise find a kit to immobilize the rail and you should be good!
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