NHTSA Probes Graco Car Seat Recall

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is investigating whether Graco Children’s Products Inc. waited too long to recall 6.1 million child safety seats. If the manufacturer did delay the recall of its car seats, it could be subject to a fine of up to $35 million, although now reportedly the White House is trying to get Congress to raise the maximum for that type of violation to $300 million for each incident.

Graco succumbed to government pressure last July, recalling around 1.9 million infant car seats made between 7/10 and 5/13. The safety issue involved buckles that could prove hard to open. This can be dangerous if a child needs to be removed from the child safety device immediately, especially in an emergency situation. That announcement expanded the company’s callback to over 6.1 million car seats.

Earlier in the year, Graco had recalled 3.7 million booster seats and toddler seats that were constructed between ’09- ’13 in the wake of NHTSA pressure. The agency had wanted Graco to recall 5.6 million child safety seats. A month later, Graco recalled another 400,000 car seats. Those were manufactured prior to 2009.

Federal law requires that a manufacturer notify NHTSA of any safety-related defect involving motor vehicle equipment within five days. Failure to do so can result in a fine.

Car Seat Defects
In Massachusetts, please contact our Boston car seat defect lawyers if you think your child’s injury may have been caused even in part by a flawed or malfunctioning child safety seat. Car seats are supposed to keep children secure in the event of a traffic crash. This means that the device must work correctly and be free of any defects or glitches that could prevent it from doing that very job. In addition to keeping a baby or young child secure during a collision, it should also be easy to remove the occupant from seat without much delay.

Manufacturers can be held liable for Massachusetts products liability if their defective product case caused injury or death. If a negligent driver played a part in causing the traffic accident that led to injury or fatality, there also may be reason for a Boston car crash lawsuit.

In other Graco news, last month, the company recalled close to 5 million strollers because of a safety issue that posed a finger amputation risk to children. The problem involved a folding hinge on the stroller’s side that could snip an infant’s finger. The manufacturer had received nearly a dozen reports of stroller injuries involving the affected Graco and Century brand models. Partial and full fingertip amputations were among the injuries sustained.

One of our Boston product defect lawyers can help you explore your legal options. Contact Altman & Altman LLP today to request your free case consultation.

NHTSA Opens Investigation into Graco’s Handling of Largest Child Seat Recall in U.S. History, NHTSA, December 1, 2014

U.S. probes Graco recall of 6.1 million child seats, The Detroit News, December 1, 2014

Graco Recalls 11 Models of Strollers Due to Fingertip Amputation Hazard, Consumer Product Safety Commission, November 20, 2014

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