The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission announced today, Nov. 20, that baby stroller manufacturer Graco has recalled 11 of its models, “due to fingertip amputation hazard.” The 11 stroller models include: Aspen, Breeze, Capri, Cirrus, Glider, Kite, LiteRider, Sierra, Solara, Sterling and TravelMate and Travel Systems. According to the commission’s report, the hazard can occur at the “the folding hinge on the sides of the stroller(s),” and “can pinch a child’s finger, posing a laceration or amputation.” Three countries will be affected by the (approximately) 5 million strollers recalled by Graco.
The United States has recalled about 4.7 million Graco strollers, while Canada is looking at about 202,000, and Mexico has been ordered to recall more than 10,000 strollers. The recall was issued after 11 accident reports were filed for multiple afflictions. Among those injuries, six of them were fingertip amputations (no child should ever have to deal with this). The remaining reports filed documented “partial-fingertips amputation and one finger laceration.” Although the manufacturer is based out of Atlanta, Ga., Graco, also known as Graco Children’s Products, their strollers are exclusively made in China.
The Graco stroller recall includes models that were sold more than 14 years ago, Aug. 1, 2000. Why did it take 14 years to initiate a recall? Is there some type of standard by the CPSC for a particular number of incidences before a recall is issued? According to Graco’s press release, the recall announcement was “voluntary.” The Graco press release stated the strollers were recalled due to bad “external sliding fold lock hinges, and round fold hinges.” The press release further states, “Graco will offer free hinge covers to caregivers who have purchased any of the affected stroller(s).” Oh my gosh, a repair kit? No refunds, no exchange offers, just a lousy repair kit, 14 years later.
The company’s website claims they are “meeting or exceeding the rigorous safety standards that are so important to help keep children safe and protected.” What are those standards exactly? Recalls from Graco have been on the rise. In fact, the company has issued recalls on 37 different products since 2000, such as: car seats, swings, highchairs, activity centers, and cribs to name a few.
CPSC.gov has the 11 aforementioned model numbers for consumers to check if their current stroller is listed, and has issued safety warnings to caregivers to use “extreme care,” if they are using the stroller, and to be aware if the stroller should start to fold in while a child is in the stroller to “immediately remove the child.”