With the aging population in America, we are seeing more and more people who are living longer, but many are limited physically or mentally. There are lots of hazards created for elderly citizens that wouldn’t necessarily pose a hazard to a younger person. Let’s take a look at bed handles, which are this type hazard. Bed handles are devices that are used to assist disabled persons from getting in and out of the bed. These bed handles have an L-shape design and are intended to slide between the mattress and box springs or under the bed. They also provide some assistance to keep disabled persons from falling out of the bed. These products are sold nationwide in drug stores, medical equipment stores and other locations.
In May, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and bed rail manufacturer, Bed Handles, Inc., located in Blue Springs, Mo., instituted a recall of 113,000 adult portable bed handles. At least three deaths have been reported related to the use of these portable bed handles. One of the deaths occurred at home and two others occurred in assisted living facilities. The deaths occurred after the individuals were entrapped between the bed handles and the mattresses. Because the handles are not stationary, they can slide or shift out of place, which can create a gap between the bed handle and the side of the mattress. This unintended movement of the device can create a serious risk of entrapment, strangulation and death.
The manufacturer suggests in the recall that these bed handles not be used without safety retention straps. The straps are designed to attach to the bed frame and to the bed handles for the purpose of reducing movement of the metal frame in order to eliminate the space or gap between the bed and the handle. The manufacturer says it will provide the straps free of charge for its product model numbers BA10W, BA11W and AJ1.
The manufacturer may be contacted at Bed Handles, Inc., 800-725-6903 (Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm CT) or online at http://bedhandles.com/recall.html. Photographs of the recalled products can be found on the CPSC website at: http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Recalls/2014/Adult-Portable-Bed-Handles-Recalled-by-Bed-Handles-Inc/. If you need more information on this subject, contact Ben Locklar at 800-898-2034 or by email at Ben.Locklar@beasleyallen.com.
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