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Products Liability > Defective Baby Car Seats

Children are seriously injured and killed in vehicle collisions because of defective child safety seats. Hundreds of children are endangered every time they are placed in a vehicle due to defective manufacturing or design features in child seats. Most vehicles are not equipped for child safety seats and this, combined with defective manufacturing and designs, places consumers' children at high risk for deadly injuries. Many child safety seats have been found to be defective in design and manufacture. Most design defects in child safety seats relate to the buckles, harnesses, shell designs, and the padding within the seat. When collisions occur, defective child seat designs endanger children by not properly containing them in their seat and throwing them around the vehicle, causing head injuries and full ejection from the child safety seat. Manufacturing problems are caused by defective harnesses and other plastic parts, leading to ejections and excessive movement within the car.

Are tethers required in car seats for children?

Tethers are the straps on the seat belt that attach to the top of the safety seat to the back of the vehicle's rear dash and provide a solution to the instability of child safety seats that can result in the child being thrust around and the seat falling over. Despite the fact that tethers have been around for about 30 years now, they are still not required in car seats. This safety strap can prevent the safety seat from falling over by better securing the seat. Some safety seats have too loose of a strap and, combined with an incompatible vehicle interior, they never properly restrain the seat or the child.

How can child seat safety be increased?

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and in conjunction with the American Academy of Pediatrics, certain measures should be taken to better ensure the safety of children in child safety seats. Depending on the weight of the child, guardians should adjust how the child rides in a vehicle. A child under 20 pounds in weight should be put in a rear facing infant or convertible child safety seat. When the child grows to around 20 and 40 pounds and/or is older than one year of age, a forward-facing convertible child safety seat is suitable. A child who weighs between 40 and 60 pounds should have a child safety seat with a lap and shoulder belt harness, along with a booster seat with belt positioning. The combination of a shoulder belt along with the lap belt is important. Some older vehicles do not have both a shoulder belt and lap belt combination, but wearing only a lap belt is dangerous. Any child under the age of 12 should not ride in the front seat.

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Defective Baby Car Seats
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