Public Notice - Evenflo PortAbout Infant Restraint Systems And Similar Models

TP 2436
Road Safety Leaflet # D-2003-06 (E)



Manufacturer:
Evenflo Company, Inc.
1801 Commerce Drive 
Piqua, Ohio 45365
USA

Importer & Distributor:
Evenflo Canada
6345 Dixie Road, Unit 1
Mississauga, Ontario
L5T 2E6

Media Contact:
Jam Stewart: (312) 396-9748

Consumer Contact:
Consumer Service: 1-800-233-5921

Model Number Affected and the First 3 Digits of the Model Numbers:
374 PortAbout 3
375 PortAbout 5 Premier
386 PortAbout 5
544 Journey Premier Travel System
546 Journey Premier Travel System
575 PortAbout 5 Travel System
576 Comfort Dimensions Travel System
578 Comfort Dimensions Premier Travel System
582 Comfort Dimensions Plus Travel System
638600 Accessory, PortAbout Base

Number of Units:
56,602

Geographic Distribution:
All across Canada

Dates of Manufacture:
Between September 1st, 2002 and September 12th, 2003

Problem:
The anchorage belt of the Universal Anchorage System (UAS) on certain models of Evenflo infant restraint systems equipped with a detachable base, as well as an accessory base, which is being sold as a separate unit, may have the UAS belt improperly routed through the base at the time of manufacture. The improperly routed UAS belt will not allow the base of the restraint system to be properly tightened to the vehicle anchorage brackets. In a serious frontal collision the improperly secured unit could result in the infant restraint and its infant occupant separating from the base, which could cause serious and/or fatal injuries.

Background:
During routine compliance enforcement testing Transport Canada experienced separation of the infant restraint from the base during laboratory crash testing. A comprehensive investigation was opened and twenty crash tests were conducted. Seven infant restraints containing a properly restrained infant crash test dummy completely separated from their base and one additional unit experienced partial separation of the infant restraint from its base.

The manufacturer was advised of all the crash test results. From this investigation it was determined that the improperly routed UAS belt was the major cause of the test failures. On October 3rd, 2003, Evenflo issued a public notice to the Canada NewsWire Ltd. regarding the matter.

Safety Risk:
With the UAS belt improperly routed during manufacturing, it is likely that the restraint system base cannot be properly secured to the anchorage brackets in the vehicle, in accordance with the owner's manual instructions. A loosely installed base in the vehicle presents a high risk of serious injury and/or fatality to an infant in the event of a serious frontal collision.

Consumer Action & Recourse:
Consumers with the above noted models are advised to refer to the manufacturer's instruction sheet attached hereto as a PDF file 1 or contact Evenflo directly at 1-800-233-5921 for instructions on how to check their particular unit with respect to the routing of the UAS belt and how to correct an improperly routed UAS belt.

Until such time as it can be determined that the base of the unit is equipped with a properly routed UAS belt, Transport Canada is advising parents and caregivers to proceed in one of two ways:

  1. Use the vehicle seat belt to secure the infant restraint/base combination to the vehicle, as per the manufacturer's instructions or
  2. Temporarily discontinue use of the base and use the vehicle seat belt to secure the infant restraint to the vehicle without the base, as per the manufacturer's instructions.

Consumers who have registered their restraint system with Evenflo will receive a letter and instructions concerning the routing of the UAS belt.

Owners who are uncertain as to whether or not they have registered their unit should contact Evenflo at the above number. Consumers should not return the affected units to the retailer.

Portabout Infant Restraint System with Base
Portabout Infant Restraint System with Base

Transport Canada: 1-800-333-0371

Release Date: October 22, 2003



1This PDF file contains instructions in both English and French.

To view PDF documents you must use Adobe® Acrobat Reader. Visit the Adobe site to download the latest, free version.

If you need an alternative format or for more information, please contact us by e-mail at mvs-sa@tc.gc.ca or call toll free 1-800-333-0371 (Ottawa area (613) 998-8616).

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