June 20, 2013 at 12:06 PM ET
A tire failure is always potentially dangerous, even when the vehicle is a stroller. That’s why Kolcraft is recalling more than 96,000 Jeep Liberty strollers. The tires on these three-wheeled strollers have inner tubes that can rupture and cause the wheel rim to fracture and fly off as a projectile.
At least 18 people have been injured by these tire blow-outs – including two children standing near the strollers – according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
The CPSC said there have been at least 39 reports of inner tube ruptures. In most cases, this happened when the tires were being inflated.
The flying parts caused cuts and bruises to arms and legs, the torso and head or face. There were also two reports of property damage.
It's been a bad week for the Jeep brand. Earlier this week, Chrysler recalled 1.2 million Grand Cherokee and Liberty Jeeps. The move came after the automaker at first disputed the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's recall request.
The recalled Jeep Liberty strollers were sold at Burlington Coat Factory, Sears, Toys R Us, online and at juvenile specialty stores from June 2010 through June 2013, for between $150 and $180.
The Kolcraft strollers involved in the recall were made in China and have model numbers starting with JL031, JL032, JL034, JL035 or JL036. “Jeep” is printed on the side of the stroller and the front of the stroller tray.
If you have one, stop using it and contact the company for free replacement wheels. As part of this recall notice, the CPSC reminded parents to always use a manual bicycle pump, not a gas station air pump, to inflate stroller tires.
(Read more about the Kolcraft Jeep Liberty Recall)
This is the second Kolcraft stroller recall this month. Just last week, the company recalled 36,000 Contours Options three- and four-wheeled strollers because the hinge mechanism used to adjust the handlebars can smash or cut fingers. The company reports three cases where children’s fingertips were amputated.
These strollers were sold at juvenile product stores and online at Amazon, Target and Toy R Us from January of 2006 to June of 2012, for around $150. If you have one, stop using it and contact the company for a free repair kit.
(Read more about the Kolcraft Contours Options recall)
In March, Kolcraft agreed to pay a $400,000 civil penalty and to improve its internal control and compliance systems, after the safety commission alleged the company “knowingly failed to report to CPSC immediately, as required by federal law, a defect involving its play yards.
The CPSC said Kolcraft received about 350 reports of the play yard collapsing and injuring youngsters from 2000 through mid-2009. The company did not report this to the CPSC until January 2009.
In July 2009, the company announced the recall of one million of these play yards.
“Kolcraft has agreed to establish an effective program to ensure it remains in compliance with safety laws and regulations enforced by CPSC,” commission spokesman Scott Wolfson told NBC News.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission is working to develop new federal safety rules for strollers. The agency says the rule changes are needed to prevent further deaths and injuries to young children.
“Once these rules are finalized, the United States will have one of the strongest stroller safety standards in the world,” Wolfson said.
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