Graco is adding 403,000 more child safety seats to their car seat recall making the total over 4 million
In February 2014, Graco Children’s Products recalled over 3.8 million car seats due to faulty harness buckles. The recall was enacted due to promoting by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The NHTSA received over 135 customer complaints about the harnesses since October 2012, ABC News reports. According to the report, Graco has received over 6,000 complaints about the seats. In 74 cases, caregivers had to cut the harnesses to remove the child from the seat. In March 2014, Graco added an additional 403,000 seats to the recall, because these seats also use the same harness mechanism. However, the company is still under pressure by the NHTSA to recall an additional 1.8 million seats using the same buckles.[ March 2014, http://www.gracobaby.com/safetyandrecall/pages/safetyandrecallarticle.aspx?recallID=41&page=SafetyAndRecall]
Right now, the car seat recall covers the following model manufactured between 2009 and 2012:
- My Ride 70
- Cozy Cline
- Nautilus Elite
- Argos 70
- My Ride with Safety Surround
- Comfort Sport
- Size 4 Me 70
- My Ride 65
Classic Ride 50
The most recent Graco recall includes the following seats manufactured between 2006 and 2014:
- Ready Ride
- Argos 70 Elite
- Head Wise 70 with Safety Surround
- Nautilus 3-in-1
- Step 2
- My Ride 65 with Safety Surround
- Nautilus Plus
- Smart Seat with Safety Surround
The NHTSA is pushing that Graco also recall the following car seats which use the same harness system:
- Snugride 32
- Infant Safe Seat-Step 1
- Snugride 35
- Tuetonia 35
- Snugride 30
- Snugride Click Connect 40
The NHTSA sent a letter to Graco in January of 2014 stating that the NHTSA had been investigating the complaints since February 2013. The NHTSA found “numerous instances where the harness buckle was difficult or impossible for consumers to unlatch.” Graco countered the accusations by stating that the buckles are only hard to unlatch when contaminated with food or other liquids, or when caregivers used “improper unbuckling procedures.” The NHTSA rejected these statements and forced the recall of the toddler seats.
Prompting the NHTSA’s recall are two lawsuits filed against Graco over the faulty buckles. One class action lawsuit states that the buckles “pose an unreasonable safety hazard to consumers and/or their children because in the event of a vehicle accident it may be imperative to remove the child from the seat belt as quickly as possible to avoid further injury or death.” The other lawsuit charges Graco with the fault of a two-year-old’s death resulting from the inability of the caregivers to remove the child from the seat after an accident. The toddler died when the vehicle caught on fire.
In response to the 1.8 million additional seats that the NHTSA wants Graco to add to the recall, Graco said in a letter that the infant seats are not included in the recall because caregivers can remove the entire seat from the car without unlatching the buckle, the Associated Press reports. The letter stated, “”Graco looks forward to further discussions with the agency to resolve any remaining issues relating to those additional car seats.”
With 4.2 million car seats currently under recall, the Graco recall is the fourth-largest recall in American history. If the NHTSA is successful in forcing the recall of the additional 1.8 million infant seats, the recall will be the largest car seat recall in American history.
If your child has experienced issues due to a recalled infant seat or child safety seat contact the attorneys at Wright & Schulte LLC so you can concentrate on your child and not the issues surrounding the product liability that needs to be placed on large manufacturers. Call 1-800-399-0795 or visit yourohiolegalhelp.com to have all your questions answered and obtain the help you need.