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Child Restraint Systems Manufactured by Fisher-Price, Inc.; Public Proceeding Scheduled

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Topics:  Fisher-Price

Child Restraint Systems Manufactured by Fisher-Price, Inc.; Public Proceeding Scheduled

William A. Boehly
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Federal Register
September 26, 1994

[Federal Register: September 26, 1994]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
[Docket No. NCI 3270; Notice 1]

 
Child Restraint Systems Manufactured by Fisher-Price, Inc.; 
Public Proceeding Scheduled

AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

ACTION: Notice of public meeting.

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SUMMARY: NHTSA will hold a public meeting at 10 a.m. on October 21, 
1994 regarding its initial decision that certain child restraint 
systems manufactured by Fisher-Price, Inc., fail to comply with the 
flammability requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 
213, Child Restraint Systems.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
James Gilkey, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance, National Highway 
Traffic Safety Administration, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 
20590; (202) 366-5295.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 30118(a) (formerly 
section 152(a) of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 
1966, as amended, 15 U.S.C. 1412(a)), NHTSA has made an initial 
decision that certain child safety seats manufactured by Fisher-Price, 
Inc., do not comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle 
Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 213, Child Restraint Systems, 49 CFR 
571.213. Compliance tests performed for NHTSA indicate that the 
shoulder belt webbing on Fisher-Price Models AO9191, DO9191, 9103, 
9149, 9173, 9179, and 9180 seats manufactured between 1988 and 
September 16, 1993 do not meet the flammability requirements of FMVSS 
No. 213 and therefore would not provide adequate protection to children 
in the event of a fire in a vehicle in which they are installed.

    Pursuant to 49 CFR 554.10, a public meeting will be held at 10 
a.m., on Monday, October 21, 1994 in Room 9230, Department of 
Transportation Building, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC, at 
which time the manufacturer and all other interested persons will be 
afforded an opportunity to present data, views, and arguments on the 
issue of whether the child safety seats covered by this initial 
decision comply with FMVSS No. 213.
    In September 1993, Fisher-Price filed a petition seeking an 
exemption from the recall requirements of the statute on the basis that 
any noncompliance with the flammability requirements of FMVSS No. 213 
was inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety (58 FR 
59511). After NHTSA denied the petition (59 FR 23253), Fisher-Price 
appealed (59 FR 30957). In conjunction with its appeal, Fisher-Price 
requested the agency to convene a public meeting on the 
inconsequentiality issue, which was scheduled for August 17, 1994 (59 
FR 39015).
    Pursuant to the agency's regulations governing inconsequentiality 
petitions, 49 CFR 556.4(a), such petitions may only be filed after a 
determination that a noncompliance exists. Until recently, NHTSA had 
believed that Fisher-Price had made such a determination in September 
1993, prior to filing its inconsequentiality petition. However, on 
August 10, 1994, Fisher-Price informed the agency that it was taking 
the position that it had never formally determined that a noncompliance 
existed. NHTSA therefore canceled the public meeting and terminated the 
inconsequentiality proceeding (59 FR 42326). The documents reflecting 
the agency's consideration of that petition may be found in NHTSA 
Docket No. 93-79.
    Under the circumstances, NHTSA has resumed its noncompliance 
investigation and, as described above, has made an initial decision 
that these Fisher-Price car seats do not comply with FMVSS No. 213. 
Pursuant to 49 CFR 556.4(a), Fisher-Price could at this time renew its 
petition for an inconsequentiality determination. However, by letter 
dated August 25, 1994, counsel for Fisher-Price advised NHTSA that the 
company did not plan to file such a petition, even if the agency should 
finally decide that a noncompliance exists.
    Interested persons are invited to participate in this proceeding 
through written an/or oral presentations. Persons wishing to make oral 
presentations are requested to notify Ms. Elaine Beale, Office of 
Vehicle Safety Compliance, National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration, Room 6111, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 
20590, (202) 366-2832, before the close of business on October 18, 
1994. Written comments must be submitted to the same address and 
received not later than the beginning of the meeting on October 21, 
1994.
    All materials related to the issues addressed by this notice are 
available for public inspection during working hours (9:30 a.m. to 4 
p.m.) in NHTSA's Technical Reference Library, Room 5108, 400 Seventh 
Street, SW., Washington, DC 20590.

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 30118(a); delegations of authority at 49 
CFR 1.50(a) and 49 CFR 501.8

    Issued on: September 20, 1994.
William A. Boehly,
Associate Administrator for Enforcement.
[FR Doc. 94-23688 Filed 9-23-94; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-59-M

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