Most high chairs sold in the United States comply with a voluntary safety standard that includes what is known as a crotch post—a structure that’s supposed to keep an unharnessed child from sliding downward and falling to the floor or strangling if its head gets caught on the way down. Consumer Reports’ most recent high chair tests found two exceptions: BeBeLove’s 604-1 and 604-B.
The BeBeLove 604-1 ($40 to $65) lacks the post needed to meet the voluntary safety standard for high chairs. The pricier BeBeLove 604-B ($90) includes the crotch post, but the post doesn’t provide the protection it should. As a result, Consumer Reports has judged both high chairs a Don’t Buy: Safety Risk.
While the BeBeLove 604-B high chair includes the crotch post in the box as a separate piece to be installed, there are no installation instructions. An uninstalled crotch post can still meet the voluntary safety standard provided the post, when installed, prevents a metal wedge that is sized to approximate a small child’s torso from passing through either of the leg openings.
Consumer Reports tested the crotch post on the BeBeLove 604-B as it does on other high chairs, using a metal wedge the same size as the one specified in the voluntary safety standard: The wedge passed easily through the leg openings on two separate samples of the BeBeLove 604-B.
Consumer Reports urges consumers who already own a BeBeLove 604-1 or 604-B high chair to stop using it and ask the retailer or the manufacturer for a refund. If you’re high-chair shopping, be sure to buy one that has a crotch post. The Mia Moda Alto, a CR Best Buy at $100, is one of several top-scoring high chairs in Consumer Reports’ Ratings that come with the post built-in. Also be sure to always fasten the chair’s harness to secure the child.
For more information on BeBeLove 604-1 and 604-B high-chair results, or Consumer Reports’ complete high chair ratings, visit www.ConsumerReports.org