Posted: Thursday, March 13th 2014 at 9:36am
Graco adds more than 403K child seats to recall; Chrysler recalls Chargers
By The Associated Press
Graco Children's Products has added more than 403,000 child seats to last month's recall of 3.8 million to replace faulty harness buckles. Meanwhile, Chrysler is recalling 49,000 Dodge Chargers.
But the added seats won't end a dispute with the U.S. government's road safety watchdog. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration still wants Graco to add 1.8 million infant seats to the recall because they have the same buckles.
Buckles can get gummed up by food and drinks, making it difficult to remove children. In some cases parents have had to cut harnesses to get their children out. The agency says the problem increases the risk of injuries in emergencies.
Graco said in a letter to the agency that it found additional toddler and harnessed booster seats that should be recalled.
The 403,222 seats added to the recall include 2006 through 2014 Argos 70 Elite, Ready Ride, Step 2, My Ride 65 with Safety Surround, My Size 70, Head Wise 70 with Safety Surround, Nautilus 3-in-1, Nautilus Plus, and Smart Seat with Safety Surround, according to NHTSA documents.
In its letter to NHTSA, Graco said it didn't include the infant seats because they are used differently than the toddler seats, and because in an emergency, an adult can remove the whole seat from the car rather than unlatch the buckle.
"Graco looks forward to further discussions with the agency to resolve any remaining issues relating to those additional car seats," the letter said.
Atlanta-based Graco, a division of Newell Rubbermaid Inc., has until March 20 to explain why last month's recall didn't include infant seats.
A NHTSA spokesman wouldn't comment and referred a reporter to the agency's previous statements about why seven rear-facing infant seat models should be recalled.
Before the 403,222 seats were added, the recall was the fourth-largest child seat recall in U.S. history.
Chrysler is recalling more than 49,000 Dodge Charger muscle cars because a connector can overheat and knock out low-beam headlights.
The recall affects 2011 and 2012 Chargers equipped with halogen headlamps. Dealers will inspect and replace for free the headlight wiring, bulbs and assemblies if necessary.
Canadian safety regulators say the problem could compromise driver visibility and lead to a crash. But Chrysler says it knows of no crashes or injuries. The problem is similar to one that led to a 2012 recall of Charger police cars.
The new recall covers 43,450 Chargers in the U.S., 2,850 in Canada, 375 in Mexico and 2,700 outside North America. Customers with concerns can call Chrysler at (800) 853-1403.
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