The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has, for the first time, voted to set federal safety standards for strollers. The commission’s vote, which was unanimous at 3-0, includes a series of previously voluntary regulations, and it adds specific provisions to prevent strollers from having a risk of injuries including scissoring, shearing, and pinching, most of which are associated with folding or foldable strollers. Last summer, Peg Perego recalled 223,000 strollers because of entrapment and strangulation hazards, and thousands of Kolcraft strollers were also recalled because of a finger amputation hazard.
For the new federal standards, CPSC staff reviewed more than 1,200 stroller-related incidents, including four fatalities and nearly 360 injuries that occurred from 2008 through 2012. The agency believes that the new standard will help to reduce the risks associated with the majority of the hazard patterns identified in reviewing the stroller incidents. Hazards include wheel breakage or detachment, hinge issues, car seat attachment, handlebar failures, and structural integrity issues. The injuries that have resulted from these problems include finger amputation, falls, and head entrapment.
The proposed standard has a 75-day “comment period” before it is added to the Federal Register, during which time the public can post comments at www.Regulations.gov. The CPSC recommends that the standard become effective 18 months after publication of the final rule in the Federal Register.
What does this mean for us?
Well, this is great news for everyone! We will feel more secure when deciding on and purchasing a stroller that it has been tested thoroughly and passes all safety standards. This does not mean that any stroller manufactured before the regulation goes into effect has any sort of defect or is dangerous. It just means that going forward, manufacturers will be extra careful to make sure that specific parts of the stroller are designed without a glitch, especially the folding mechanism, harness and wheels.
Come September 2015, and just about every single stroller company will be debuting a whole new stroller line! If you are in the market for a stroller, expect the prices on the current strollers to drop as all retailers will be clearing out their older stock. I would wait to see what improvements have been made to the new strollers to judge for myself whether I feel it’s necessary to purchase the newer versions. Some companies will be slowly phasing out older stock to ensure that they aren’t left with clearance, such as Bugaboo.
You can see the full list regulations here – http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=CPSC-2013-0019-0008
Question? Feel free to comment below and I’ll do my best to answer them!