Bed Handle Recall Lawyers
Dangerous product attorneys at our law firm are currently investigating product liability lawsuits on behalf of individuals who have suffered serious injury or the wrongful death of a loved one due to recalled bed handles. The bed handles in question are meant to help disabled individuals enter or exit their beds, and are mostly in use in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and other live-in care facilities. Despite a recall issued in May 2014, less than 1% of consumers who purchased these bed handles have taken action to make them safe. This means that thousands of individuals may still be at risk of serious or fatal injuries resulting from entrapment or strangulation.
Recalled Bed Handles Kill 3 So Far
The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recently re-announced the recall of more than 113,000 adult bed handle bars which have been linked to the death of at least three individuals. The initial recall was issued in May 2014, but less than 1% of affected consumers have responded to the recall.
According to an article featured by U.S. News & World Report, three women have died as a result of the potentially dangerous products. The handles are made of steel, and feature three foot long poles which extend under a bed mattress and are designed to make it easier for elderly or disabled individuals to get into or out of bed. These devices, commonly featured in nursing homes and other care facilities, do not feature safety retention straps. This means that they may slip out of position and cause a gap to form between the bed handle and the mattress, which poses the hazard of entrapment or strangulation for users.
A History of Bed Handle and Bed Rail Injuries and Deaths
This recent recall of bed handles is not the first time the U.S. government has stepped in to protect elderly and disabled citizens from these potentially dangerous products. In 2012, the FDA and the CPSC joined forces to investigate the possible risk of death or entrapment due to bed rails. At this time, the agencies identified at least 35,000 reports of bed rail injuries and at least 150 deaths. Some groups, including the consumer advocacy group Public Citizen, have issued multiple petitions to have portable bed handles banned because they are associated with such a high rate of injury and death.
One women whose mother, a dementia patient living in a nursing home, died of strangulation after becoming entrapped by bed rails, began a personal campaign to educate families about the dangers of portable bed handles and bed rails, saying to the New York Times in 2012, “Families need to be told about the possible dangers of bed rails. Dangerous bed rails with poor design should not be allowed to stay on the market.”
Bed Handle Injury Lawsuits
Clearly, there have been grave concerns voiced about the safety of portable bed handles for many years. Despite this, and despite a recent recall of bed handles which had to be re-issued due to lack of compliance, more than one hundred thousand elderly and disabled individuals could still be using portable bed handles. When families make the difficult decision to place their loved ones in nursing homes or other facilities, they do so with the trust that facility managers will stay abreast of all safety concerns and address them promptly. When caregivers fail in this duty, innocent patients may suffer.
If you or someone you love has suffered serious injury or even wrongful death due to recalled bed handles or unsafe bed rails, you could be entitled to substantial compensation. Contact our dangerous products law firm today to schedule a free and confidential legal consultation.