Last week New York City Schools were closed for Mid-Winter Recess. I had my children home with me while I attempted to keep working from our home office and keep my sanity.
I was thrilled when a mother in my 7 year old’s class offered to take my son to a movie. I spontaneously agreed and then my anxiety kicked in. You see, I have never allowed my son to be driven in a car that wasn’t operated by a member of my family and we have child safety seats for every stage.
I was shocked that when I voiced my concern to my friends with kids similarly aged, they thought I was being nuts. Every one of them said that their kids ride in cars without booster seats. They all have a seat in their vehicle, but they don’t think twice about their child being in other people’c cars without one. One friend even told me that she isn’t required to have a Booster Seat anymore because her daughter is 6.
The law in New York is that children need to be riding with a booster seat until they are 8. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends using a booster seat until a child is 4 feet 9 inches tall. The point of the booster is to raise a child up so the seat belt falls properly on their body so it can protect the if there is a crash.
I called the mother up and voiced my concern. She said that her kids don’t use a booster seat anymore, but she has room in her SUV if I want to put one in for my son.
My son went on his first real outing without me, and he had a great time. I on the other hand was counting the minutes till he got home. I couldn’t wait to hear all about his adventure.
Britax is recalling certain convertible child restraints, models Boulevard 70 G3, Advocate 70 G3, and Pavilion 70 G3, Model Numbers: E9LJ91A, E9LJ91M, E9LJ91S, E9LJ92E, E9LJ93P, E9LJ93S, E9LK91A, E9LK31A, E9LK31Q, E9LK32D, E9LK32Z, E9LK33Q, E9LL11A, E9LL11Q, E9LL12D, E9LL12Z, E9LG81A, E9LG83N, E9LG83P, E9LG83X, E9LG83Y, E9LL21A, E9LL23P, E9LL23Y, manufactured from June 2012 through August 2012. These seats were manufactured with a softer chest pad material that may be bitten or chewed into pieces by a child using the seat. If the child bites off a piece of the softer pad, it could be a choking hazard, resulting in injury or death. Britax will provide owners with replacement HUGS pads that are made from a firmer material and instructions on how to replace the pads free of charge. To view a video on how to remove and replace the HUGS chest pads visit www.BritaxUSA.com/support/safety-notices and select the product from the menu on the right side. Owners may remove the HUGS pads and continue using the seat until replacement pads are received. The safety recall is expected to begin shortly. Owners may contact Britax Customer Service Department at 1-888-427-4829 with questions or to request replacement pads in the event their restraint is not already registered with Britax.
I received an email last night from a past client who was expecting some relatives coming into town with a new infant. She wanted to know our thoughts on whether a car seat is necessary in a taxicab. It is actually a question we get asked a lot, because the law in NY reads as this:
Drivers of yellow medallion taxicabs and for-hire vehicles and their passengers, are exempt from laws regarding car seats and seatbelts. Keep in mind, the TLC encourages everyone in the vehicle to buckle their seatbelts while riding in a cab. There are no Taxi and Limousine Commission rules regarding this, as it is a State exemption. Passengers with children are encouraged to bring their own car seats, which the drivers must allow passengers to install.
*NOTE – Children under the age of seven are permitted to sit on an adult’s lap.
Baby Bodyguards strongly encourages parents to always have their child in an age appropriate safety seat while riding in a vehicle.
According to Time Out New York Kids, some NYC parent favorites for portability and convenience are , the Graco SnugRide because; it can be secured in a taxi without the use of its snap-in car seat base. NYC parents also favor the Triple Play Sit ’n’ Stroll, which has wheels that let you convert the car seat to a stroller. If you need to travel lighter, try the foward-facing Eddie Bauer Portable Car Seat; it weighs just four pounds and can be used with children older than one year weighing more than 22 pounds.
For parents that don’t own a car, it is still important to know the correct way to install a child safety seat. Baby Bodyguards can let you use one of our cars while we give you the lesson.
Congrats to Dionne Sinclair of NYC, the winner of the StrollAway. What will you with all your new found extra room, now that your stroller will be tucked away out of sight? I’m sure you will make good use of the space.
For those of you that did not win, keep checking back. We have exciting giveaways coming up. Soon we will be giving away a Britax Frontier, along with a car seat installation class!
I remember the days of my Snap and Go and Snug Ride. I loved having my baby fall asleep during a car ride, or a walk, and then just unhook the car seat and put it on my living room floor, while the baby slept and I took care of some bills or email. Unfortunately, those days are gone after a new study came out in the journal Pediatrics.
The study found that the seats can compress the chest wall and reduce airway size, which can result in lower oxygen levels in the blood. The study found that car seats can result in mild respiratory compromise in abut 20% of newborns.
While these seats are a must for travel, it is important for us to ever so carefully lift our babies out of their car seats and put them in their cribs.
Click for more info on the study
Some car seats are being recalled after safety experts determined they could fail to secure children in the event of a crash.
Cerain Britax Frontier child restraints are involved.
Tests reveal the harness straps may detach from the metal yoke on the back of the restraint if repeatedly loosened one strap at a time.
To fix the problem, Britax will mail to all registered owners rubber caps that prevent the straps from detaching.
To get the fix, call Britax at 800-683-2045 and request a kit.
You can also order a fix on their Web site.
The affected models include E9L54E7, E9L54H6, E9L54H7, E9L54M6 manufactured on or before September 14, 2008, and model E9L5490 manufactured on or before Sept. 17, 2008.
Having a baby is expensive, we can all agree on that. Second hand high chairs, toddler beds and clothing come in very handy. The one item that I strongly recommend buying new is a car safety seat. New car seats come with registration cards. As soon as you buy your car seat, be sure to send in the card to register it. Then the manufacturer can let you know by mail if your child’s safety seat has been recalled.
If for some reason you must use a second hand car seat, here are some guidelines to follow:
Avoid used seats if you don’t know the seat’s history. Never use a car seat that
- Is too old. Look on the label for the date it was made. Check with the manufacturer to find out how long they recommend using the seat.
- Have any visible cracks on it.
- Does not have a label with the date of manufacture and model number. Without these, you cannot check to see if the seat has been recalled.
- Does not come with instructions. You need them to know how to use the seat.
- Is missing parts. Used car safety seats often come without important parts. Check with the manufacturer to make sure you can get the right parts.
- Was recalled. You can find out by calling the manufacturer or by contacting the Auto Safety Hotline at 888/DASH-2-DOT (888/327-4236) or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) at www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/problems/recalls/childseat.cfm.
Do not use seats that have been in a moderate or severe crash. Seats that were in a minor crash may still be safe to use. The NHTSA considers a crash minor if all of the following are true:
- The vehicle could be driven away from the crash.
- The vehicle door closest to the car safety seat was not damaged.
- No one in the vehicle was injured.
- The air bags did not go off.
- You can’t see any damage to the car safety seat.
If you cannot verify all of the above, the car seat is considered unsafe for use, even if it appears to be in good condition. Unless a used car seat is coming from a close friend or family member and meets the above criteria, it is almost always safer to choose a new car seat for your baby.
CHARLOTTE, N.C., Dec 12, 2008 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — Britax Child Safety, Inc. announced today that it is conducting a voluntary safety recall on the Frontier(TM) combination Harness-2-Booster(TM) child restraints. The recall includes Frontier child restraints manufactured between April 1, 2008 and September 14, 2008 for Model #s E9L54E7, E9L54H6, E9L54H7 and E9L54M6 and between April 1, 2008 and September 17, 2008 on Model # E9L5490.
If the harness straps are repeatedly loosened one strap at a time, then the harness strap(s) may become detached from the metal yoke located on the back of the child seat. If the harness strap(s) becomes loose or detached then the condition can be corrected by inspecting the back of the child seat and reattaching the harness straps. If this condition occurs, the child may not be properly restrained, and in the event of a vehicle crash there could be an increased risk of injury.
To address this issue, Britax will provide two rubber caps that can be easily placed on the yoke slots to prevent the harness straps from detaching. The rubber caps have been specifically designed for the Frontier yoke to provide a secure fit and have been tested to verify their effectiveness. No later than January 7, 2009, the rubber caps will be mailed with an instruction sheet to all registered Frontier child restraint owners with manufacturing dates prior to September 15 or 18, 2008. Additional caps will be made available to retailers with affected inventory of Frontiers manufactured prior to September 15 or 18, 2008. All Frontier child restraint owners should confirm whether their Frontier is affected by verifying the date of manufacture. Starting December 15, 2008, further details will be available here http://www.frontierrecall.com/” http://www.FrontierRecall.com
Until consumers receive their remedy kit, they should confirm that their harness system is properly attached to the metal yoke and they may continue to safely use their child restraint.
Owners of the Frontier child restraint who have not registered their product or need to verify existing registration should contact the Britax information line, toll free at 1-800-683-2045 or visit http://www.frontierrecall.com
NHTSA warns seats could fail in a crash
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has issued a Consumer Advisory to alert owners of Baby Trend child safety seats that the seat base could fail and not protect a child during a collision.
The Baby Trend seats involved in the recall are the Magnum (model number 6439), Galaxy (model number 6481), Silverado (model number 6448), and the 6400S bases that were sold separately and manufactured between May 14, 2007, and April 1, 2008.
“Baby Trend is recalling the bases of these child safety seats because they could fail to adequately protect children in a collision. Baby Trend will replace the base free of charge,” NHTSA warned on its Web site.
Owners of the affected seats should contact Baby Trend at 1-800-328-7363 to obtain a free replacement base.
“In the meantime, NHTSA is urging consumers not to use the car seat with the base,” the federal safety agency cautioned.
Source: Consumer Affairs