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Ikea US relaunches furniture recall after child dies

Ikea has re-launched a recall of millions of chests and dressers in the US and Canada following the death of an eighth child.

It said items in its Malm range and other chests and dressers pose a “serious tip-over and entrapment hazard” if not secured to a wall,

Ikea first recalled the furniture in 2016 after four children had died.

It has no plans for a UK recall, stating that the chest of drawers “meet all mandatory stability requirements”.

Josef Dudek, a 2-year-old boy in California, died when he became trapped beneath a three-drawer Malm chest after he had been put down for a nap by his father.

Since 2011, four other young children have been killed in connection with the Malm range.

A further three children have died as a result of other Ikea chests and dressers tipping over, with the earliest death occurring in 1989.

Widespread criticism spurred the company to add China to the recall last year. However, it has not made announcements in other countries, including the UK.

Ikea said it meets “mandatory stability standards” in all markets and that the products remain safe if secured to a wall, as recommended.

It has a “Secure It!” campaign to raise awareness of the issue.

A spokeswoman for Ikea said it was not aware of any tip-over fatalities outside the US and has no plans to expand the recall.

She said: “Our priority is and has always been to ensure that our products are safe to use. That means securing the chest of drawers to the wall according to the assembly instructions, using the tip-over restraint provided with the product.

“We don’t believe a global recall from IKEA would be the solution. Instead, we are convinced that we can make a difference by raising awareness among consumers of the tip-over risks and how to prevent them through the global Secure it! campaign.”

Tip-over incidents

The re-launched recall involves Ikea children’s chests of drawers taller than 60 cm and adult chest of drawers taller than 75 cm, including those from the Malm line.

It follows reports of more than 300 tip-over incidents in the US and Canada since 1985, resulting in eight deaths and 144 injuries to children between the ages of 19 months and 10 years old.

Lawyer Alan Feldman, an attorney for the Dudek family whose son was killed in May, has said that the recall in 2016 was not effective.

Ikea said it had done “extensive” outreach to customers about the recall, including an email campaign.

A spokeswoman said: “The most recent incident has indicated to us that there is more work to be done in spreading the message. However, we had to wait to confirm that the product is IKEA, which took some time.”

She said Ikea said it has provided refunds or wall-anchoring help for more than one million dressers or chests since 2015, when it started offering free anchoring kits.

Ikea has stopped selling the products in the US and Canada that do not meet voluntary US standards.

It also reached a $ 50m settlement with the families of three toddlers killed previously.

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BBC News – Business

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