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From Products Liability Law Daily, July 2, 2014

Graco recalls 1.9 million rear-facing infant seats

By Joe Bichl

Graco Children's Products is recalling 1.9 million rear-facing child restraints because the buckle may not unlatch properly. Graco stated in its recall notice that the defect involves difficulty in unlatching the harness buckle. In some cases, the buckle becomes stuck in a latched condition so that it cannot be opened by depressing the buckle's release button.

Previous recalls. In February and March of this year, the company had recalled some 3.8 million front-facing toddler and booster child restraints after determining that the buckles may become stuck and not unlatch. In such cases, Graco had warned, it may be difficult to remove the child from the restraint, increasing the risk of injury in the event of a vehicle crash, fire, or other emergency, in which a prompt exit from the vehicle is required.

Current recall. The rear-facing models are being recalled under similar circumstances as the front-facing models. However, Graco has indicated that the latch defect “does not in any way affect the performance of the car seat or the effectiveness of the buckle to restrain the child.” Currently, Graco has received no injury reports as a result of the latch malfunction.

The rear-facing restraints were manufactured between July 2010 and May 2013, and include: SnugRide, SnugRide Classic Connect (including Classic Connect 30 and 35), SnugRide 30, SnugRide 35, SnugRide Click Connect 40, and Aprica A30.

Remedy. Graco will replace the buckle with a new design, free of charge. The manufacturer has not yet provided a notification schedule. In addition, Graco will conduct a consumer satisfaction campaign to cover infant child restraints manufactured with AmSafe QT3 and Signature buckles. Under this consumer satisfaction campaign, the company will provide a replacement buckle at no cost to any consumer upon their request for the useful life of the child restraint.

Contact information. For more information, consumers can contact Graco at 1-877-766-7470 or online at www.gracobucklerecall.com, or at consumerservices@gracobaby.com. Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Companies: Graco Children’s Products

MainStory: TopStory ProductRecallsNews NHTSANewsStory MotorEquipmentNews

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