A clinical study published in 2022 by the Ecology Centers Healthy Stuff lab shows that many child car seats incorporate toxic chemicals in their design. These car seats are mandatory in New Jersey, yet exposing young children to these chemicals raises concerns.
Flame retardant chemicals are the culprits
Car seat manufacturers have made progress since 2018 when only eight car seats were free of toxic chemical flame retardants. In 2022, 42 car seat models were free of toxic flame retardants. Manufacturers incorporated these chemicals to meet federally mandated flammability requirements for vehicle cabins, yet the toxicity of flame retardants raises product liability concerns. Lower-priced. Previously, manufacturers used chlorine or bromine as chemical flame retardants. Car seats are more likely to contain toxic chemicals. Phosphorus-based chemicals are now more prevalent in car sets, but studies have not yet determined whether those retardants also pose a health risk.
Car seat companies add these chemicals to their products because they have difficulty producing the seats for a retail cost of under $100. Adding the chemicals is a cheaper alternative than producing the seats with specialized fabrics that have natural flame resistance. What’s more, many experts have questioned the continued need for flame retardants in child car seats.
Injuries from defective products
Problems resulting from defective products can sometimes take a long time to manifest themselves. If your child suddenly seems to acquire a rare disease, it’s worthwhile to look into how their car seat was manufactured and what chemicals may have been used. The presence of a toxic chemical in such products could make the manufacturer liable for medical treatments and suffering that your child and family may endure. If a safer alternative could have been incorporated into the product’s design, that factor could be used in a lawsuit against the manufacturer.
Product liability and their ensuing lawsuits can take many forms. Plaintiffs should be aware of the difficulties of pursuing such actions. Performing research and due diligence may help prove a product liability case against a manufacturer.