The Journal of History     Spring 2003    TABLE OF CONTENTS
The World's Concerns

Eddie Bauer Car Seat Made by Dorel

Bonnie Bosak purchased an Eddie Bauer car seat for her son Dawson. But very soon, she noticed a problem. Every time she put him in the seat, he would cry and fuss.

For the next several months, she noticed a small bruise on his lower spine. Bosak couldn't figure out where the bruise was coming from -- until she took the seat apart. She found a raised ridge that ran horizontally across the width of the car seat. It corresponded perfectly with the bruising on Dawson's back.

Bosak's family doctor confirmed her suspicions. The doctor ordered her to stop using the car seat.

She contacted the maker of the car seat -- Dorel Corporation. The company didn't ask for her name, contact information, or style of car seat. Dorel said if she didn't like the car seat, return it to them for a full refund. That was not what she wanted to hear.

Bosak's next stop? Transport Canada. The government agency sent two investigators to her home. They examined the car seat and said it appeared she had a legitimate complaint. The investigators also pointed out that the new car seat she bought as a replacement, had cushioning in the head impact zone, which the Eddie Bauer seat did not.

The officials from Transport Canada took the Eddie Bauer seat for testing. They returned to her home a second time, saying the seat did not meet Transport Canada's safety standards.

The investigation found that 11 models of car seats distributed by Dorel did not meet Transport Canada's safety standards.

"My concern is that Transport Canada and Dorel have not made an adequate effort to notify the public," Bosak told Marketplace.

Rex Barnes is a Conservative member of parliament from Newfoundland and Labrador. He got involved when Bosak called his office.

"We asked the government to recall them and the government decided not to recall them. They decided to offer a repair kit and we felt that was unacceptable," Barnes said.

Barnes said the repair kit should have included a warning that without the fix, the seat could bruise children's backs.

Bonnie Bosak was supposed to meet with Transport Canada, but the agency cancelled the meeting.

Questions she wanted answered include:

Of the quarter million people who purchased the affected car seats, how many owners called in for a repair kit?

How could non-compliant car seats be on the market for 4 years?

Bonnie Bosak's not ready to end her fight yet.

"I'm writing letters to all the premiers, territorial leaders, and transport ministers ministers for all the provinces across Canada. I'm hoping that they might help me out with my campaign to let the parents know that there could be a problem with their car seats. And I only hope that it works."


The Journal of History - Spring 2003 Copyright © 2003 by News Source, Inc.