December’s third recall of adult bed rails, Compass Health Brands pulling about 104,900 Carex bed rails last week, was preceded by three deaths of people in their 80s who used the bed rails.

“When attached to an adult’s bed, users can become entrapped within the bed rail or between the rail and the side of the mattress,” the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recall alert says. “This poses a serious entrapment hazard and risk of death by asphyxiation.”

Between April 2014 and June 2020, the notice says, this happened with an 85-year-old man in an Ohio assisted living facility; an 84-year-old California woman at her home and an 88-year-old woman in a Washington assisted living facility.

“In each incident, the bed rail was not securely attached to the bed and the user became entrapped between the product and their mattress,” the notice says.

Also, each incident involved Bed Support Rail model No. P566. That and the Easy Up 2-in-1 Bed Rail, model No. P569, have been recalled. They were sold at medical supply stores and online by Carex, Amazon and Walmart.

Compass is offering a free repair kit for the Bed Support Rail involved in the deaths and a refund for the Easy Up bed rail. Contact Compass at 888-571-2710, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 pm.

Any incidents involving these products can be reported to the CPSC.

The Food and Drug Administration issued a memo on bed rail safety concerns in 2018 that said “even when portable bed rails and hospital bed rails are properly designed to reduce the risk of entrapment or falls, are compatible with the bed and mattress, and are used appropriately, they can present a hazard to certain individuals, particularly to people with physical limitations or altered mental status, such as dementia or delirium.”