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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Kathleen Begala
(301) 504-0580 Ext. 1193
June 30, 1992
Release # 92-104

Hedstrom Offers Bracket Guard To Cover Hooks On Swing Seat

PRODUCT: Approximately two million sling-type swing seats manufactured by the Hedstrom Corporation. The seats were sold as part of Hedstrom and some Sears swing sets, and separately as swing seat replacements.

PROBLEM: The "V"-shaped brackets that attach the sling seat to the swing chains have caused serious lacerations, when the hook ends of the brackets were not completely closed. The failure to completely close the bracket hooks may result in injury to children.

WHAT TO DO: Consumers should check their sling seats for "V" bracket hooks that are not completely closed and to close the hooks until the metal touches. In addition, Hedstrom is offering free bracket guards to cover the closed hook ends. Consumers should call 1-800-453-7077 or 1-800-233-3271 to receive the free bracket guards and instructions.

WASHINGTON, DC -- The Hedstrom Corporation, in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), is voluntarily offering a retrofit kit for Hedstrom sling-type swing seats, to prevent lacerations from hook ends on the swing brackets. The "V"-shaped brackets that attach the sling seats to the swing chains caused serious lacerations when the hook ends of the brackets were not completely closed. The failure to completely close the hooks until the metal touches may result in injury to children.

The Hedstrom Corporation has received 18 reports of lacerations to children from open hooks on sling seats. Injuries included leg, arm, face, and groin lacerations. The incidents occurred on seats where bracket hooks were not closed until the metal was touching.

Hedstrom sling seats were sold nationally over the past six years as part of Hedstrom or Sears swing sets or separately as swing seat replacements. Approximately two million seats were sold nationally through retailers, wholesalers, and variety stores.

The installation instructions for the Hedstrom seats indicate that the hooks should be completely closed. However, because incidents have occurred, Hedstrom advises swing owners to check their sling seats for "V" bracket hooks that are not completely closed and to close the hooks until the metal touches. In addition, Hedstrom is offering consumers free bracket guards to cover the closed hook ends. These guards are intended to prevent possible injuries from open hooks.

Consumers should call the company's toll-free hotline at 1-800-453-7077 or 1-800-233-3271 to receive the free bracket guards and instructions.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is announcing this repair program as part of its mission to protect the public from unreasonable risks of injury and death associated with consumer products. The Commission's objective is to reduce the estimated 28.5 million injuries and 21,600 deaths associated each year with the 15,000 different types of consumer products under CPSC's jurisdiction. Hook end of bracket, if not completely closed, may cause deep lacerations to children using the swing.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission protects the public from the unreasonable risk of injury or death from 15,000 types of consumer products under the agency's jurisdiction. To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury and for information on CPSC's fax-on-demand service, call CPSC's hotline at (800) 638-2772 or CPSC's teletypewriter at (800) 638-8270. To order a press release through fax-on-demand, call (301) 504-0051 from the handset of your fax machine and enter the release number. Consumers can report product hazards to info@cpsc.gov.

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