A company that makes car safety seats is recalling nearly 3.8 million of them because children can get trapped by buckles that may not unlatch. But the action by Graco doesn’t satisfy federal regulators, who say the recall should include another 1.8 million rear-facing car seats designed for infants.
The recall covers 11 models made from 2009 through 2013 by Graco Children’s Products of Atlanta. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, it’s the fourth-largest child seat recall in U.S. history.
But the agency criticized Graco in a letter today, saying that the recall excludes seven infant car seat models with the same buckles. It says the company and the government have received complaints about stuck buckles on those seats — and that parents have sometimes had to cut harness straps to remove their child.
Graco says its tests found that food or beverages can make the harness buckles sticky and harder to use. A spokeswoman says the rear-facing infant seats aren’t being recalled because infants don’t get food or drinks on their seats. She says the company will send replacement buckles to owners of infant seats on request.
Affected models include Cozy Cline, Comfort Sport, Classic Ride 50, My Ride 65, My Ride with Safety Surround, My Ride 70, Size 4 Me 70, Smartseat, Nautilus, Nautilus Elite and Argos 70.