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We all know stories of how adults start smoking. Sneaking cigarettes from their parents and going out behind the house and sharing them with friends but is this bad habit starting earlier, perhaps as early as infancy? Yeah we thought that seemed pretty silly too, but if you were to interpret the mattress safety laws for crib mattresses put in place by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) you might believe such a statement to be true. Our government officials must think they do. Federal Fire Code CFR 1633, which went into effect July 1st 2007, requires your baby’s crib mattress to meet the same rigorous burn rate as an adult smoker’s mattress!
They do but are they really safer? There is little to no evidence that such safety requirements would make a difference in a high temperature flash over fire? As a matter of fact the health risks from potentially harmful chemicals far out weigh the benefits of safety in the event of a fire.
The government has shown little or no interest at all in the harmful effects on a developing baby from these likely hurtful fire retardant chemicals being used industry wide in mattresses today. From our perspective it seems they are more aware of the lobbyist for the large chemical companies and their interests rather than the long and short term affects on our children. As evidence grows due to the studies of independent researchers about the effects of fire retardants such as PBDE’s the EPA has taken notice and put them on its watch list. Potentially dangerous chemicals are now being found in the blood streams of infants and you have to wonder how their development both mentally and physically will be affected. It’s no secret that babies swallow, chew and suck on any objects in reach not to mention harmful airborne VOC’s (Volatile Organic Compounds)
We don’t use lead paint on cribs anymore so why would we buy a crib mattress with a fire retardant in them. You and I would not consider exposing our children to such an environment now that you have a choice. You can get a doctors prescription allowing a mattress to be manufactured without the fire retardants or you can get mattresses that pass the mandated law naturally with no chemicals, crib mattresses that utilize natural fire retardants like wool to meet the new safety requirements.