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Erie County Health Commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein is urging parents and caregivers to take notice of the sleeping positions in which they place their infants to avoid a tragedy.

Burstein said two infants in the region died recently as a result of being placed in dangerous sleeping positions, which underscores the importance of educating parents and caregivers of the importance of keeping infants in safe sleeping positions.

“The babies in question died as a result on an inability to keep their airways open for proper breathing,” Burstein said in a prepared statement Monday.

“Babies should always be placed to sleep on their backs not on their side or tummy. These positions are not safe. Do not use pillows or wedges including horseshoe-shaped nursing pillows commonly used during breastfeeding to prop your baby up or keep him/her on its back,” she added.

Burstein said babies sleeping outside of their cribs should not be left unmonitored, because car seats, swings and rockers may not be the correct size for an infants to sleep safely.