17 Aug 2012

Unsafe sleeping cause of 30 baby deaths - report

9:26 pm on 17 August 2012

A report by the Chief Coroner shows 30 babies have died as a result of asphyxiation due to unsafe sleeping over the past five years.

The Coroner's Office has begun issuing a quarterly Recommendations Recap which summarises coroners' final findings.

The first edition of the recap looks at sudden unexpected death in infancy.

Chief Coroner Neil Maclean says since July 2007, there have been 163 cases where a coroner has found that to be the cause of death.

In another 30 cases, a coroner found that death was caused by asphyxiation while sleeping on their stomach or sleeping in bed with someone else.

In a further 19 cases, the cause of death was not ascertained, but the death occured in a background of unsafe sleeping arrangements.