We know, we know: everything is always changing in the parenting space. But just as equally annoying, it's just as important to be on top of all the new findings an innovations that help keep our kids safe. Especially important for expecting parents as they get ready to shop for their first high chair, new safety standards are coming that will mean changes in regulations for high chairs both at home and at restaurants that you want to keep on your radar.
Between January 2011 and September 2017, CPSC received a total of 1,842 incident reports related to high chairs, including 271 injuries. From 2015 through 2016, there were an estimated 18,500 high chair-related injuries treated in U.S. hospital emergency departments, according to CPSC’s National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS).
Yup. That's a huge number and something that really needed to be taken a close look at. Due to those statistics, the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CSPC) announced updated standards that need to be followed by all brands on the market.
Originally, we followed the high chair recommendations that were already in place from ASTM International (formerly known as the American Society for Testing and Materials), but the CSPS updated them, and their version will be mandatory standards starting in mid-2019.
The change has ruled that starting in 2019, all high chairs will be required to use a passive crotch restraint and a three-point restraint system. This means that there must be a fixed post that sits between the child's legs as well as restraints that adhere to the highchair in three different places. In addition, each manufacturer will be required to incorporate certain features that will make it harder for a high chair to tip backward. Lastly, there will also be clearer warning labels about tripping hazards on high chairs.
There is no need to go into full panic mode and buy a new high chair, as most on the market do already have three-pointpoint harnesses. It is suggested at this point to do a visual check and make sure that the high chair in your home at least meets the three-point harness minimum, as there is no way to know if high chairs currently on the market will fully meet all requirements. If you're able to hold off on buying a new high chair until these new standards go into effect, try to hold off - though we know that's not always possible.