Graco Stroller – Strangulation
Written by Andrew Sarski on March 1, 2011
In 2010, Graco Children’s Products Inc., one of the most widely recognized manufacturers of children’s products, issued a recall which affected millions of Graco stroller and travel system models which had been sold in stores nationwide over a period of ten years. The models included in this recall were Quattro Tour models manufactured before November 2006 and MetroLite models produced before July 2007, as well as the Graco Passage, Alano and Spree models manufactured before February 2008. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), these defective products caused several instances of significant and sometimes fatal injury in children, including entrapment, finger amputation, and strangulation. Previously, Graco issued a recall in 2005 affecting over a million Duo Tandem and MetroLite strollers which failed to latch properly and caused over 230 injuries like lacerations, bruises and broken bones in children.
Strangulation can occur under a number of circumstances, especially for infants who are typically unable to protect themselves from harm. Unfortunately, infant strangulation is often the result of a child’s exposure to a dangerous or defective product, most often a product which the child’s parents have no idea may cause their child serious injury and even death. In some cases, including the defective Graco stroller and travel system products, the harmful defective product has actually been marketed as a means of protecting the child.
Defective Graco Products and Strangulation Connection
Reports issued by the U.S. CPSC determined that between the years of 2003 and 2005, there were four instances of infant death caused by strangulation resulting from the use of Graco Quattro Tour and MetroLite stroller and travel systems. According to the agency, these particular models of Graco products pose a significant risk for small children, particularly infants younger than 12 months of age, who may pass through the opening between the stroller tray and seat bottom. While the opening may be large enough for the infant’s body to slip through, in many cases, the infant’s head may not fit, causing the child to become trapped and have difficulty breathing. In four cases, this scenario led to fatality, and in five additional instances, infants became trapped and suffered bruises and cuts, and in one case, the child’s breathing was inhibited. Three more of Graco’s stroller and travel system products have also been recalled because of the considerable risk of fingertip amputation in children who place their fingers in the stroller’s canopy hinge. In recent years, five cases of fingertip amputation have been reported, as well as two instances of finger laceration.
Although Graco was aware of the potentially fatal hazards of its Quattro Tour and MetroLite products as early as 2003, the recall wasn’t issued until years later in 2010, allowing a seven-year lapse during which millions of small children were put at risk of suffering from major injuries and even death. In fact, Graco was penalized by the CPSC in 2005 for failing to report defects involving their products, and the manufacture of these two models was discontinued in 2007, three years before the recall was even put into effect. In January 2008, an industry standard was instituted, requiring manufacturing companies to make the opening between the stroller’s tray and seat bottom larger to prevent entrapment and strangulation hazards. However, Graco had already stopped producing these particular products a year earlier, and no immediate action was taken to protect consumers and children against the devastating risk posed by the defective products which had already been manufactured and distributed to consumers across the country.
A Defective Stroller Attorney Can Help
These defective Graco products have the potential to cause devastating injury and even strangulation in small children. If you are currently using a recalled Graco stroller or travel system, discontinue its use immediately. If your child suffered strangulation as a result of using one of these defective Graco products, you are not at fault and you may be entitled to reimbursement for the medical expenses and pain and suffering sustained by you and your family during this tragedy. Contact a defective product attorney as soon as possible to discuss the benefits of filing a wrongful death lawsuit against Graco Children’s Products Inc. Defective product lawyers have the expertise and knowledge necessary to help the families of victims develop a successful case against the product manufacturing company and collect the compensation they deserve.