May 17, 2007

Study finds toxic chemicals in child car seats

Ann Arbor, Michigan – New research by the Ecology Center finds that brand-new child car seats are made with several dangerous chemicals that can lead to serious health risks for children, including bromine and lead. The Center found the best seats were the Graco SnugRide Emerson and EvenFlo Discovery Churchil; the worst were the Combi Centre EX Mango and Peg Perigo Primo Vaggio Toffee. The full list can be found at

“Car seats save lives,” says Jeff Gearheart, Clean Car Campaign Director. “It’s absolutely essential that parents put their children in them while driving. However, some car seats are safer than others when it comes to chemical composition. makes it easy for parents to choose the least toxic car seat for their child.”

The Center tested for chemicals such as bromine, chlorine, lead and heavy metal allergens. Such chemicals have been linked to major health problems such as liver, thyroid and developmental problems in children. As their systems are still developing, children are the most vulnerable in terms of exposure to chemical-laden dust and inhaling toxic fumes.

The Ecology Center tested 62 brand-new infant, convertible and booster car seats. The study found that the best seats had no brominated flame retardants, no PVC and low levels of other chemicals tested. Over 40 per cent of seat cushions tested contained no brominated flame retardants, and 77 per cent were free of PVC-plastic. However, over one-third of all seats tested had one or more components which contained higher levels of toxic chemicals.

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