Ford, Honda, Nissan Recalls

Ford has issued a recall of certain  2013 Escapes with 1.6 liter engines. Ford is warning customers not to drive these vehicles. There is a potential of a fuel line leak which could result in a fire.

Ford Motor Co. is advising owners of an estimated 11,500 new Escapes to park their vehicles until they can be repaired by dealers due to potential fuel line leaks that could cause fires. Unlike most recalls where makers may take up to a month to notify owners and begin repairs, Ford is urging immediate action in this case [Read more]

Honda has issued a recall of 321,000 CR-Vs from the 21012 model year and an additional 7,300 MY 2013 Acura ILX vehicles.

Honda says that if the inside driver or passenger door handles are used at the same time as the power or manual door locks, the inner door latch may not work. This means a door may not latch, or it could latch and open when the locks are used. [Read more]

Nissan is recalling certain model year 2012 Juke. Due to an improper weld penetration the rear seat back striker may separate during a crash. Read the report from NHTSA.

Cosco CRS Recall

A recall has been issued for Cosco Child Restraint Systems manufactured by Dorel Juvenile Group. The units under this recall were manufactured from March 15 to August 1, 2002. There are 54,400 units that could potentially be affected, so please be sure to check the model number on your child’s CRS if you have purchased a Cosco car seat or booster seat.

The model numbers included in this recall can be found here.
 

These models were found to have webbing on the harnesses that was not strong enough to withstand significant exposure to sunlight. The webbing, if exposed to substantial amounts of sunlight, may degrade to the point that it is no longer able to provide adequate protection to a child in the event of a collision.

This safety recall is expected to begin on or about February 2, 2010. Dorel Juvenile Group will be contacting all owners who have registered their CRS, and will send replacement kits, along with instructions, free of charge.

Owners may call Dorel Juvenile Group toll free at 1-866-690-2539. You may also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236, 1-800-424-9153, or visit www.safercar.gov.

If your child has been injured as a result of this defective child restraint system, please call our office at 1-877-829-7211 to discuss your potential claim.
 

 

/ab

Booster Seat Poor Evaluations

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute have put out a new study with regard to booster seats - they found 13 booster seats do not position the belt properly on children. This study did not look at the crashworthiness of the seats but rather the belt positioning. As we know booster seats help prop children up higher, with a goal of making sure the car's seat belt is in the correct position.

The seat belt is meant to be routed across a child's lower hips and mid-shoulders instead of the abdomen because the liver and spleen are more vulnerable to injuries. Story

This of course does not mean and should not be taken to mean that parents should opt not to use a booster seat at all- it just means that parents need to ensure that the one they are using at least has the seat belt positioned in the proper location.

 

We, at the firm,  are advocates for 5 point harness booster seats - while these booster seats referenced in the story utilize the car's seat belt, they merely deal with the the height issue and prop the child up higher to position the belt properly. They do not account for the weight of the child. Car seat belts are made for a minimum weight - usually much heavier than the average 4-6 year old. 

Also, make sure to check your state laws regarding the age AND weight requirements for children and child restraints in your state.

Hipmonkey.com

We have often discussed the need to utilize five point harnesses booster seats. Far too many children have been killed in car crashes when their child seat has failed them. The Kyle David Miller foundation, was set up in memory of such a young boy. His courageous family has gone on to start a website called www.hipmonkey. com where you can find 5 point harness car seat for your child, while supporting their foundation.

No matter where you purchase your next car seat, please do your research. And if you have a child getting ready to go into a booster, before automatically putting them in one of those booster seats that uses the car's seatbelt and no tether, please check out the five point harness boosters. We have heard over and over again, how easy it is once your child in in a booster seat that uses the car's seat belt - because then he/she has the ability to buckle and unbuckle themselves...Except there is of course the other end of the story that we hear, when after a car crash, a child who was utilizing the car's seat belt in conjuction with one of those booster seats, was ejected form the vehicle. Why? Because the car's seat belt could not restrain the child during the crash. Car seat belts are not made for small children. 

Kyle David Miller Foundation - Car Seat Safety

Our children and their  safety is something about which we care deeply. That is why our law firm involves itself in various types of litigation involving child safety. Awhile back we were touched by a video we saw on youtube about a young boy, Kyle David Miller (see here). He unfortunately was killed in a car crash. He was not in a five point harness, but rather a booster seat which utilized the car's seat belt. When we personally saw the video, our family was driven to find a booster seat for our children that had a five point harness. We realized that the booster seat we were using, which used our car's seat belt, was not securing our children the way they needed. We have since learned that there has been a foundation set up in  memory of Kyle which collects money in order to buy 5 point harness seats for children up to 80 lbs. who otherwise would not have access to them. Check  out the video and website to learn more  about the foundation. 

Britax Child Seat Recall

Here is yet another child seat recall report.  What is most disturbing is that Britax has in the past seemed to have a better reputation for their car seats.
Summary:
 CERTAIN BRITAX MARATHON CHILD RESTRAINT SYSTEMS, MODELS E9L06, E9W06, AND E906, MANUFACTURED FROM MAY 23 THROUGH JULY 28, 2006. DURING TESTING, THE TETHER HOOK OPENED WHICH FAILS TO CONFORM TO THE DYNAMIC PERFORMANCE AND CHILD RESTRAINT SYSTEM INTEGRITY REQUIREMENTS OF FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 213, CHILD RESTRAINT SYSTEMS.
Consequence:
 THE MANUFACTURER HAS NOT YET PROVIDED THE AGENCY WITH A DESCRIPTION OF THE CONSEQUENCE AS IT RELATES TO MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY.
Remedy:
 BRITAX HAS NOT YET PROVIDED THE AGENCY WITH A REMEDY AND NOTIFICATION SCHEDULE.
Notes:
 CUSTOMERS MAY CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY: 1-800-424-9153); OR GO TO HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV.

Booster Seats

Booster seat versus car seat...what a dilemma. I had bought a  booster seat for our  daughter...one of the seats that utilizes the car's seat buckle.  We figured she is  five years old, most of the children in her class were using booster seats, and she meets the height  and  weight requirements for the seat.  But every time I would look in my rear view mirror, and the car was making even the  slightest of turns...there she  was moving  around...the seat essentially not doing  anything to protect her.  Then I saw this video, and realized that my worries were not unfounded.
  Seat belts first off do not always work, they do come unlatched, and they also fail. Secondly, seat belts are made for an average sized person of at least 80-100 pounds...certainly not made for a child who is between 30 and 40 pounds. We started researching more, and learned the number of children who fall victim to this every day.We quickly replaced our booster seat with a five point, tethered booster seat.  The one  we chose can be found here. At least now when I look back at her in my rear view mirror I see her in her seat, staying in one place.

Rear Facing Infant Seats

As a parent,  this  video makes me  think twice  before turning our daughter to  a forward facing seat.