Don’t leave children unattended in strollers: Health Canada advisory

Health Canada issued an advisory Wednesday reminding caregivers not to leave children unattended in strollers, as it could put them at risk for entrapment, asphyxiation or falls.

OTTAWA — Health Canada issued an advisory Wednesday reminding caregivers not to leave children unattended in strollers, as it could put them at risk for entrapment, asphyxiation or falls.

Deaths and injuries have occurred when children were left sleeping unattended or when stroller restraint systems were not used, it said.

The advisory coincides with the U.S. recall of about two million strollers after reports of four deaths.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said the deaths occurred between 2003 and 2005 when the four infants became trapped inside the strollers and were strangled.

The strollers being recalled are older versions of the Graco Quattro Tour and MetroLite strollers and travel systems, all made before 2007 and distributed by Graco Children’s Products Inc. of Atlanta.

Health Canada has received one report of a Canadian fatality in a stroller due to entrapment. In the Canadian incident, which occurred in 2006, the child was not restrained and was sleeping unattended in the stroller.

Because the incident was not attributed to product failure, no recall has been requested by Health Canada.

“It is timely to remind parents and caregivers of how to help ensure their children’s safety when using strollers,” the agency said.

“Do not leave children unattended in strollers. Always use the stroller’s restraint system. Infants and young children should never be placed to sleep in products that are not specifically designed to accommodate an unattended sleeping infant, such as carriages, strollers, car seats, infant swings and bouncers.”

A child who falls asleep in a stroller should be left in the restraint system and watched, or transferred from the stroller to a crib, Health Canada said.

The advisory noted that the strollers being recalled in the United States on Wednesday are no longer being manufactured but may still be in use.

“Parents and caregivers may wish to contact the manufacturer for further information, including information regarding the retrofit kit that is being made available,” the statement said.