By Rita R. Robison, Consumer Specialist
Consumers shouldn’t use some "metoo" clip-on table top chairs imported by phil&teds USA, because they put young children at risk of serious injury due to several safety hazards, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission warns in a statement. The commission is urging consumers to stop using some metoo clip-on chairs immediately.
The infant/toddler chair, with a nylon fabric seat and a metal frame, clamps onto tables using two metal vise clamps. The upper part of each clamp rests on the table top and has either a rubber clamp pad on its underside or a rubber boot covering it. The chairs are sold in red, black, and navy.
Rubber boots covering tops of metal clamps
The clip-on chairs affected by this warning don’t have plastic spacers between the table clamps and the front horizontal metal bar. The clip-on chairs that have plastic spacers between the table clamps and the front horizontal metal bar are under evaluation by the commission.
Spacer between front horizoltal bar and metal clamp
The company has refused to agree to a national recall of their hazardous product that is acceptable to the commission. It has offered a repair kit consisting of rubber boots to place on the upper clamp grips of the chairs. Consumers should be aware that the commission hasn’t approved a repair kit for this product, despite the firm’s prior statement that it was conducting a recall "in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission."
The commission is urging consumers to stop using the affected metoo chairs to prevent the risk of injury to children.
The metoo chairs without plastic spacers pose serious fall and amputation hazards to children. Children can suffer impact and head injuries when the chair detaches from the table and falls. The commission staff is aware of numerous incidents involving the metoo chairs.
The commission staff has determined that the clamps can detach from different table surfaces. In addition, the chairs can detach when children move around or use their feet to push against other objects. Staff also found that the lack of adequate space between the horizontal metal bar at the front of the chair and the clamps can cause children’s fingers to be severely pinched, lacerated, crushed, or amputated if caught between the bar and the clamp when the chair detaches.
In addition to hazards with clip-on chairs without plastic spacers, the product packaging and instructions provide conflicting information, the commission said. The product’s packaging and marketing information show the product being used in ways that may lead to the chair detaching from the table. However, the product’s instructions don’t adequately warn against this type of use.
Tens of thousands of the metoo chairs without spacers may have been distributed since May 2006 for about $50 through philandteds.com, Amazon.com, Buy Buy Baby, Target, Toys R Us, other online retailers, and other independent juvenile specialty stores.
For more information on recalls by the commission, see www.recalls.gov.