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Graco Infant Car Seat Buckles Recalled After Long Dispute

Graco Infant Car Seat Buckles Recalled After Long Dispute

July 1, 2014 — Graco has bent under pressure from federal safety authorities and will recall 1.9 million infant car seats with buckles that can get progressively stickier over time and may be impossible to open in an emergency.

Graco and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) have been in a dispute over the recall since early this year. In February and March, Graco recalled 4.2 million child car seats and booster seats with faulty buckles, but decided not to recall infant car seats with the same buckles.

Graco argued that in an emergency, the rear-facing infant seats could be removed from the car by detaching a buckle at the base, rather than removing the infant from car seat.

In May, the NHTSA ordered a test of this hypothesis to see how long a malfunctioning buckle would delay removing a child from a vehicle in an emergency. Graco did not confirm whether these tests factored into today’s recall, but they did admit that parents reported problems freeing infants from the seats.

Recalled Graco infant car seats include:

  • SnugRide, SnugRide Classic Connect
  • SnugRide 30, SnugRide Classic Connect 30
  • SnugRide 35, SnugRide Classic Connect 35
  • SnugRide Click Connect 40
  • Aprica A30

Click here for a complete list of recalled car seats.

Graco says the problem has not caused any injuries or deaths. However, they agreed to an out-of-court settlement to resolve a lawsuit filed by the family of a 2 year-old girl who died in a car fire while strapped into a Graco car seat. The girl’s mother and a bystander were injured while struggling to free the child.

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