The backseat of a car can carry a variety of odds and ends: a person’s groceries, one’s work briefcase or even all of the carpool kids. Perhaps the most precious cargo in West Virginia is the one riding in the baby car seat, cooing and reminding you of the joy that comes with being a parent. Parents sometimes assume that the baby’s car seat, with its straps and buckles, will be secure on the road, but this is not always the case. One seat by Graco recently was recalled as part of one of the biggest defective product recalls of this type in half a decade.
The company is recalling nearly four million seats and 11 models. The models covered were for the years 2009 to 2013. This is because it was discovered that it is hard to unlatch the buckles on the harness.
The buckle issue is a potentially harmful defect because it makes it harder to release a child from the seat. This is particularly dangerous during an emergency, such as a vehicle collision situation or fire. The problem remains under investigation.
Issuing a recall can be an important step in removing a defective product from the hands of vulnerable consumers. However, sometimes a recall is issued too late — after someone has already been hurt or even died. In the case of the baby seat recall, the family members of a child who ends up getting injured or killed as a result of the car seat’s defect have the right to file a lawsuit against the company in West Virginia, pursuing reimbursement for financial damages. A successfully navigated case can result in financial restitution that can help to cover medical costs and other related losses.
Source: Los Angeles Times, Graco recall of child car seats the largest in five years, No author, Feb. 11, 2014