When used as an infant carrier, the handle of these seats made by Kolcraft Enterprises unexpectedly can change position, causing the seat to rotate and the baby to fall to the ground.
Ann Brown, chairperson of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, told Early Show Co-Anchor Jane Clayson: "These are the combination car seats you can use as carriers when you get your baby home and want to bring her into the house without waking her. They're fine when used as car seats, it's just when you pick them up" that there's a problem.
Brown explains what can happen: "You walk along with the baby. All of a sudden the handles unexpectedly release and the baby can pitch forward and hit the ground."
At least one infant has suffered a skull fracture, and two have suffered concussions. The CPSC reports that 42 infants have been injured as a result of this defect.
"That's no way to treat a baby," says Brown.
Kolcraft is recalling the car seats in conjunction with the CPSC and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The company is offering a free repair kit to address the faulty handle.
The recall involves Kolcraft infant car seats/carriers with the model names: Infant Rider, Secura, Travel-About, Plus 4, Plus 5, Kolcraft Infant Restraint, Kolcraft Infant Car Seat and Playskool Infant Car Seat manufactured from Jan. 1, 1993 through June 30, 1999.
Other manufacturers' car seats have also been found deficient. "Just this last year, we have recalled 2 million car seat carriers," says Brown. "That's why we're coming out with a standard to make sure no other ones will be a problem."
Brown emphasizes that all the car seats in question had "problems with carrying. So until you get your recall and until you get your repair, don't
carry them by the handle."
To receive a free repair kit, consumers can call Kolcraft toll free at 877-776-2609. Or, call the CPSC at 1-800-638-2772, or visit its Web site.