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October 1993

Accidental Strangulation of a Toddler Involving a Wall Light Switch

Author Affiliations

Division of Pediatric Critical Care Children's Hospital 700 Children's Dr Columbus, OH 43205

Am J Dis Child. 1993;147(10):1038-1039. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1993.02160340024006

Sir.—The regulation of many products marketed for children younger than age 3 years began in the middle 1970s following several reports of asphyxia and accidental strangulation related to cribs and the retaining strings of pacifiers, teething rings, and toys. The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (USCPSC) established laws regulating the distance between crib slats, the distance between the mattress and the side rails of the crib, and the diameter of the holes in the mesh of portable cribs and playpens and eliminating the attachment of cords to pacifiers, teething rings, and certain toys.1,2 With such regulations in place, the incidence of accidental strangulation in children younger than age 5 years has decreased by approximately 50%.3 Such tragedies are now often attributed to items such as window cords, plant holders,4 electrical cords,3 and belts that are not marketed for children and are not regulated by the