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WASHINGTON – The Consumer Product Safety Commission announced Wednesday that it had approved a new federal safety standard for crib mattresses.

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In making the new standards, the CPSC said it was made aware of at least 494 incidents, including 139 fatalities that were related to crib mattresses between Jan. 2010 and April 2021.

The new standard will require improved marking, labeling, and instructions to better communicate risks to consumers. The new rules also require that any mattress sold to be used in a play yard or playpen meet the same requirements as the original mattress, so that there is no risk of a child suffocating between the mattress and the flexible sides of the play yard.

“Today’s vote means crib mattresses of all sizes will be required to meet safety standards. This will improve safety for babies, as well as toddlers, who may continue to use crib mattresses as they transition to toddler beds,” CPSC Chair Alex Hoehn-Saric said in a statement.

Companies have until fall 2022 to meet the new federal safety standard.