May 31, 2018 4:32 pm

CAA-Québec warns of dangers related to using old car seats, encourages recycling them instead

Car seats can last anywhere between six and 12 years, according to CAA-Québec.

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CAA-Québec recently launched a program to recycle car seats in a bid to reduce the number of expired car seats still being used.

The organization started collecting expired car seats at its location on Notre-Dame Street in Saint-Henri this spring.

“Instead of putting it in the garbage why not recycle it and do something good for the environment?” said Annie Gauthier, spokesperson for CAA-Québec.

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She said she hopes to remind Quebecers of the dangers of using expired car seats, adding that standards change regularly and Transport Canada guidelines must be respected.

Car seats generally have a shelf life of six to 12 years, according to Gauthier. She said once a car seat has expired, it’s illegal to sell it.

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“Respecting the standards of industry can make the difference of a deceased child on the road or a kid who is safe and sound at home,” Gauthier said.

Too many people keep using car seats after their expiry dates or give them away to people in need — but Gauthier cautions it’s dangerous to do that, and hopes the CAA’s new program will discourage that.

The CAA sends the car seats they collect off to various companies who repurpose them, she said.

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Giving old car seats a new life

One of those companies is P’tit Paw, run by Connie Haymond out of her St-Hubert home. She makes dog collars and leashes out of used car seat straps.

Haymond said they are extremely durable, and she has seen too many dogs get hurt after their collars or leashes broke.

“Having seen so many lost dogs from broken products, I thought this has to change,” Haymond said. “So I started to design something that will prevent that.”

She covers the straps with various fabrics, and make collars, leashes and harnesses.

“The straps are amazingly durable,” she said.

“I have had a product on a beautiful Rottweiler. She has broken chains but she has yet to break one of my collars.”

Haymond sells the straps for around $25, mainly through her P’tit Paw Facebook page.

She says her ultimate goal is promoting safety, for both children and the pets they love.

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