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Cribs tested for safety by Consumer Reports

March 23, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
Parents want the best for their babies, and that includes a safe, sturdy crib. Consumer Reports conducted rigorous tests of cribs designed to help you choose one that is safe, durable and not too expensive.

Consumer Reports tested cribs because in the past some cribs have led to deaths or serious injuries of children. For parents, safety is the number one priority.

"We looked at 14 cribs from $160 all the way to $800," said Kim Kleman, editor-in-chief of Consumer Reports magazine. "To see how well they hold up, we tested them until we literally destroyed them."

Each crib is inspected and measured to make sure it adheres to federal guidelines. For example, testers used a block to check if the crib slats are close enough together so little arms and legs can't get trapped.

Another test simulates a baby's repeated bouncing and jumping to see how well the mattress support system holds up.

"I refer to that test as our 'temper-tantrum test'," said Kleman.

Testers also measure the strength of the crib slats when pulled, since growing babies do a lot of pushing and pulling.

While all of the cribs met government standards, one particular test revealed big differences.

"The good news is you don't need to spend a fortune," said Kleman. "We found two cribs that we recommend that cost $200 or less."

One the Graco Charleston Convertible Crib, for $190.

"It converts into a toddler bed, so you're likely to get a lot of use out of it," said Kleman. That's a plus for any new parent.

In addition, Consumer Reports recommends a crib from Delta that also converts into a toddler bed and costs even less. It's the Delta Venetian Convertible Sleigh 3-in-1, for $160.

Consumer Reports found both the Delta and the Graco are very easy to assemble.

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