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The non-profit Ecology Center at the consumer-related website released a research report yesterday detailing the results of its study on over 150 2011 child car seats. The Center tested the car seats for bromine, chlorine, lead, and other heavy metals and allergens. 60% of these car seats contained at least one of the chemicals tested for, while others were found to have virtually no dangerous chemicals whatsoever.

The chemicals tested for may be especially dangerous to babies and young children who use the car seats. They have been linked to allergies, birth defects, impaired learning, liver toxicity, and cancer. Babies are especially vulnerable because their bodies are still developing and spend hours in the car seats.

Parents now face a dilemma in deciding what is safer option for their child – to place their children in a car seat with potentially dangerous chemicals, or to find another seating alternative which would be more dangerous than a child car seat. The director of the center has voiced his opinion on the costs and benefits of the car seats. “Car seats save lives. It’s absolutely essential that parents put their children in them while driving,” said the director. “However, our research shows that some car seats contain more harmful chemicals than others. makes it easier for parents to research the best car seat for their child.”

Therefore, the safer option for parents would be to examine the available options for car seats and to pick the seats that have been found to contain virtually no dangerous chemicals. To assist parents in making this decision, the Center listed the most toxic and least toxic car seats in 2011.

The most toxic 2011 car seats:

  • Infant Seat: Graco Snugride 35 in Edgemont Red/Black & Graco SnugRide 30 in Asprey
  • Convertible Seat: Britax Marathon 70 in Jet Set & Britax Marathon in Platinum
  • Booster Seat: Recaro Pro Booster in Blue Opal & Recaro ProSPORT Toddler in Mist

The least toxic 2011 car seats:

  • Infant Seat: Chicco KeyFit 30 in Limonata, Graco Snugride 35 in Laguna Bay & Combi Shuttle 33 in Cranberry Noche
  • Convertible Carseat: Graco Comfort Sport in Caleo, Graco MyRide 65 in Chandler and Streamer, Safety 1st OnSide Air in Clearwater, and Graco Nautilus Elite 3-in-1 in Gabe
  • Booster Seat: Graco Turbo Booster in Anders

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