Household cots are permanent sleeping enclosures for infants and babies that have raised sides and ends. Cots are usually rectangular with sides and ends made of slats or filler bars. Often one side drops down to give easy access to a child.
Circular cots are also available. These are made with walls that have no slats. There are also cots available that convert to a toddler bed.
If infants become trapped between gaps in household cots, they can suffocate, suffer injuries to their arms and legs, or suffer strangulation if their head becomes trapped between gaps.
Toys, extra pillows and bumpers in the cot can also cause babies to suffocate if they get caught up in them. Babies may also use them as footholds to try climbing out of cots, and if they fall they can suffer serious injuries such as concussion and fractures.
Infants can also suffer strangulation if their clothing gets snagged on parts of a cot that stick out (protrusions), or if their head becomes trapped between gaps.
Loose or looped cords near cots can accidentally strangle and kill small children. Babies have died from being strangled in blind, curtain and electrical cords they accessed in their cots. There are simple steps you can take when preparing baby's sleep area to make sure it's safe from these hazards.