Frequently asked questions

What are consumers' rights in relationship to nursery products?


Consumers have rights under trading regulations applicable in nationally and in each state and should contact the ACCC or their local Fair Trading Department for more details. In addition, consumers can contact INPAA who may make an independent investigation of complaints.




Is there a complaints process about nursery products available to the public?


Consumers can complain to the ACCC or their local Fair Trading Department or through INPAA who may undertake an independent investigation of the complaint.




When is the correct time to change a car restraint from rear-facing to front-facing position?


The time to move your child from rear facing to forward facing depends on the weight of your child, how broad or tall your child is and their neck control. Most convertible seats are certified to hold infants up to 9kg. It is preferable that the infant stay in the rear facing position for as long as possible whilst remaining comfortable. For more detail we recommend you refer to the child restraint instruction manual or the manufacturer.




Is there statistical information available on the nursery product industry?


There is very little data publicly available on the Australian nursery industry. INPAA has undertaken research and is able to provide data on a fee for service basis.




How do I find out about recalls of nursery products?


All product recalls are listed on the Federal Government's Product Recalls website at www.recalls.gov.au.




What is a mandatory safety standard?


A mandatory safety standard is a regulation made by Australian Government regulators to ensure industry compliance with minimal safety standards. These may include performance and/or labelling requirements either from a recognised standard such as an Australian or overseas standard, or they may be a set of requirements specified by a particular regulator. The ACCC website is a useful resource for further information www.productsafety.com.au.




Do nursery products have to comply with mandatory safety standards?


Yes. There are currently mandatory standards applicable to vehicle child restraints, cots, portacots, prams, dummies, children's nightwear, infant bath aids and baby walkers.




What do I do if I think a product is unsafe?


Contact the supplier to see if the product meets an Australian Standard, an Australian industry standard or an international standard. If still in doubt contact the ACCC, or your local Fair Trading Department or INPAA directly.




Who is responsible for ensuring compliance with mandatory safety standards?


The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) and the various state and territory Fair Trading Departments.




What is a voluntary safety standard?


A voluntary safety standard is a standard that has been developed by Standards Australia through an extensive consultation process involving representatives from regulators, industry, safety experts and key stakeholders. The consultation process includes the opportunity for members of the public to comment on proposals prior to completion of the standard.




What is an industry safety standard?


An industry safety standard is one developed by INPAA through its Technical Reference Group for products where there is no Australian Standard but where industry recognises the need for minimum safety requirements. These are used as a guide for industry to improve the safety of products.




Are bath aids safe to use?


Yes, but only under the constant supervision of an adult carer. NEVER LEAVE A CHILD IN WATER WITHOUT ADULT SUPERVISION! All bath aids must now carry a label warning of potential drowning hazards.




What are the safety features to look for on Cots?


Minimum spaces between bars of 50mm; Maximum spaces of 95mm; No protrusion hazards; No lead based paints; No entrapment hazards; Devices to stop the cot moving, that is wheel locks or only two wheels; Instructions on recommended mattress size. Consumers should also read the Australian safety standard AS2172 for further information.




Is it safe to use secondhand portacots?


Only cots that comply with the current safety standard should be used. It is always difficult to evaluate whether secondhand cots comply with the latest safety standards. In recent years major design changes have resulted in improvements to the safety of these products and unless consumers are certain that a secondhand product complies with the new standard they should avoid using secondhand portacots.




Can I use any mattress in a portable cot?


No. Only the original mattress supplied by the manufacturer of the portable cot should be used in the product. Additional mattresses should never be used in a portable cot, as they introduce potential suffocation hazards and gaps where infants may become entrapped. The original mattress will provide sufficient support for an infant up to the weight of 15 kg. Portable cots are not recommended for use by infants once they exceed this weight.




Is it safe to go jogging with a newborn baby in a stroller?


NO. Newborn babies should not be taken jogging. Newborn babies do not have neck control and, if exposed to sudden bumps, they may be injured.




Does a car restraint have to be fitted by a qualified person?


Generally car seats can be fitted by most people if they carefully follow the manufacturer's instructions, however some people do prefer to have a qualified fitter to undertake the installation. We advise that you carefully read all the manufacturer's instructions for installation. In the event of doubt about the method of installation, consult the manufacturer of the child restraint. An excellent resource that can be contacted for additional help is the Australian Child Restraint Resource Institute (ACRI) www.acri.com.au.




Where can I find assistance to fit a car restraint correctly?


INPAA's preferred supplier of this service is ACRI, www.acri.com.au.




Are second-hand products safe?


Consumers need to be careful when purchasing secondhand products. Often these products do not have instructions for assembly, original packaging that contains warnings may be missing or the product may have been damaged in a way that is not noticeable to most consumers. Car restraints that have been involved in car accidents should never be purchased secondhand. Cots made before 1998 should also be avoided as these were manufactured before the mandatory safety standard and minimal safety criteria cannot be guaranteed. Cots older than 10 years should be avoided as they are unlikely to meet current safety requirements.




What do I do with nursery products when I've finished with them?


Damaged goods should be destroyed or put through normal recycling channels. Consumers should not resell products without the full instruction booklets that are supplied with new purchases, or products that are damaged or have all components.





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