WASHINGTON — More than 1 million baby slings made by Infantino were recalled Wednesday after claims linking them to three infant deaths.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission said babies could suffocate in the soft fabric slings. The agency urged parents to immediately stop using the slings for babies under 4 months.
The recall involves 1 million Infantino SlingRider and Wendy Bellissimo slings in the United States and 15,000 in Canada.
The slings wrap around the chest so on-the-go parents can carry their babies or just stay close as they bond with their infants.
Earlier this month, the CPSC issued a broad warning about sling-style baby carriers, saying they pose a suffocation risk to infants, especially babies under 4 months. Babies who had a low birth weight, were born prematurely or had breathing problems such as colds were also at risk.
At the time, the commission did not single out a specific type of sling or manufacturer. It said it had identified or was investigating at least 14 deaths in the last 20 years associated with baby slings.
In Wednesday's announcement, the CPSC said three of the deaths occurred last year and were linked to Infantino slings. It did not say exactly how the babies died.
In its general sling warning earlier this month, the CPSC said infants can suffocate in two different ways:
• A sling's fabric can press against a baby's nose and mouth, blocking the baby's breathing and suffocating a baby within a minute or two.
• The other scenario involves slings where the baby is cradled in a curved or "C-like" position, nestling the baby below the mother's chest or near her belly. That curved position can cause a baby who doesn't have strong neck control to flop its head forward, chin-to-chest, restricting the infant's ability to breathe. "The baby will not be able to cry for help and can slowly suffocate," warned the commission.