LONDON — More than 10,000 Infantino baby slings have been recalled across the UK after warnings the fabric carrier could be linked to the deaths of at least three babies in the United States.
The warning relates to the SlingRider baby carriers, with up to 14,000 included in the Europe-wide recall.
In a statement, Infantino urged customers to stop using the product immediately and return it for a free replacement.
But Infantino president Jack Vresics said there had been no reports of any harm to babies in the UK or Europe.
?There have been no incidents reported in UK or EU, and Infantino has not heard of any incidents in the UK and Europe,? he said.
The announcement came a day after the California-based company recalled a million SlingRider products in the United States and 15,000 in Canada following a safety warning by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
"CPSC advises consumers to immediately stop using these slings for infants younger than four months of age due to a risk of suffocation and contact Infantino for a free replacement product," the agency said in a statement.
"CPSC is aware of three reports of deaths that occurred in these slings in 2009," it added. All three were under four months of age.
The US recall also affects the Wendy Bellissimo design of SlingRider, sold exclusively through Babies "R" Us but which were never sold in Europe.
The SlingRider is a soft fabric baby carrier with a padded shoulder strap to carry infants weighing up to 20 lbs.
An Infantino spokesman said that around 10,000 to 10,500 SlingRider products had been sold in the UK, retailing at £29.99. The company said it was working with the US Consumer Product Safety Commission and Trading Standards in the UK to investigate the issue.
"Our top priority is the safety of infants whose parents and caregivers use our products, and we highly value the trust that mothers and families place in the company's products every day," the company said in a statement.
Earlier this month, CPSC issued another general warning about sling carriers, highlighting two separate risks suffocation.
In the first few months of life, babies cannot control their heads because of weak neck muscles and there is a risk the sling's fabric could press against their nose and mouth, blocking breathing causing rapid suffocation within a minute or two.
The other risk is where a sling holds the baby in a curled position, with the chin toward the chest, meaning the airways can be restricted and oxygen supply limited. The infant will not be able to cry for help and can slowly suffocate, the CPSC said.
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