New High Chair Regulations Approved for 2019
In June 2018, the Consumer Product Safety Commission approved new safety standards to reduce incidents, injuries, and deaths related to unstable high chairs in both home and commercial settings. All high chairs manufactured or imported into the United States after June 19, 2019, will be required to meet these new standards of safety.
Why Implement New High Chair Safety Standards?
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)1, from January 2011 to September 2017, there were at least 1,842 reported incidents involving high chairs. Of these accounts, 271 involved an injury, and that number only counts the incidents reported to the CPSC. Using the numbers from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System from 2015 through 2016, more than 18,500 high chair-related injuries were treated in hospital emergency rooms in the U.S. The CPSC voted in June of 2018 to enact new standards aimed at preventing as many of these injuries as possible. As stated, these requirements will regulate high chairs made in or imported to the United States beginning June 19, 2019.
What Accidents Are the New High Chair Safety Standards Targeting?
The vast majority of the thousands of high chair-related injuries reported come from the high chair tipping over or the child falling out. Young children will frequently try to climb out of a high chair after being placed into it, and it only takes a second of lapsed attention for rambunctious children to endanger themselves. The child can also rock the high chair back and forth, causing it to tip over and spill him or her onto the floor. While most of these incidents do not result in serious injury, the potential for significant bodily harm and even death exists. The CPSC's regulations require that newly made or imported high chairs be more resistant to these common occurrences than they have been in the past.
What Do the New High Chair Regulations Require?
The new regulations require smaller leg openings, more thorough warning labels to inform users of the above dangers, a passive crotch restraint system (to prevent sliding out beneath the bar), and a three-point seat belt to keep the child restrained. The standards also require designs that promote rearwards stability and prevent high chairs from tipping over backwards.2 These regulations – which are only applicable to high chairs made or imported after June 19, 2019 – will help keep the high chair stable, prevent tipping, and keep the child more secure so that he or she is less likely to fall or climb out of the high chair.
What Do the New High Chair Standards Mean for Restaurants?
Restaurants are not required to purchase new high chairs as a result of these new high chair regulations. The new CPSC rules only apply to newly made or imported high chairs. However, safety-conscious operators may want to purchase high chairs that meet this new standard to ensure guest safety. At the least, operators should be knowledgeable enough about the changes to discuss the new requirements with concerned customers.
No labelling standard exists regarding these new regulations. If you wish to purchase high chairs that meet the new standards, check the product specifications sheet or give KaTom customer service a call before making a purchase.
- CPSC Approves New Federal Safety Standard for High Chairs. CPSC. Accessed March 2019.
- New Federal Standards for High Chairs Coming 2019. NRN. Accessed March 2019.