My oldest son is now 22 years of age. Back in 1990's, the cribs had wide enough slates that it was possible to get an arm or leg stuck between the slats. This prompted it to become nearly universal to use bumper pads to keep the arms or legs getting stuck and to pad the area so an infant would not "get hurt".
This was not the safest sleep environment. We know now that there were more cases of SIDS and injured arms and legs with that setup. Now the slats are close enough to prevent these issues and it is recommended to not use any bumper pads. The chairman of the Consumer Product Safety Commission, Elliot Kaye states "I reiterate my belief that the public should stop using padded crib bumpers. The overwhelming evidence show that they do nothing more than contribute to the deadly clutter in many of our nation's cribs. Based on the real risk they present, it is a mystery to me why they continue to be sold." I agree.
The Ohio legislature recently passed a law, Sub Senate Bill 332. It includes a bumper ban. I believe it goes into effect at the end of 2017. The law prohibits the manufacture or sale of non-mesh crib bumpers. The law allows for the sale of mesh crib bumpers for the next 3 years. The law will then ban the mesh crib bumpers if the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has not created safe standards for mesh crib bumpers.
"Bumpers are unnecessary and pose a real risk to the safety of infants." - Dr. Sarah Denny, Nationwide Children's Hospital.
For more information about safe sleep for infants: here on the Ohio AAP website.