[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 38 (Monday, February 27, 2012)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 11625-11651]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-4134]



[[Page 11625]]

Vol. 77

Monday,

No. 38

February 27, 2012

Part II





Department of Health and Human Services





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Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services





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42 CFR Part 431





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Department of the Treasury

31 CFR Part 33





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 Department of Transportation





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National Highway Traffic Safety Administration





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49 CFR Parts 571 and 572





 Child Restraint Systems; Hybrid III 10-Year-Old Child Test Dummy; 
Final Rules

Federal Register / Vol. 77 , No. 38 / Monday, February 27, 2012 / 
Rules and Regulations

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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

49 CFR Part 571

[Docket No. NHTSA-2011-0176]
RIN 2127-AL10 (Formerly RIN 2127-AJ44)


Child Restraint Systems

AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), U.S. 
Department of Transportation (DOT).

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: This final rule amends the Federal motor vehicle safety 
standard for child restraint systems to expand its applicability to 
child restraints sold for children weighing up to 36 kilograms (kg) (80 
pounds (lb)). This rule also amends the standard to incorporate use of 
a Hybrid III 10-year-old child test dummy (HIII-10C), weighing 35 kg 
(78 lb), in compliance tests of child restraints newly subject to the 
standard. In a companion document published elsewhere in this issue of 
the Federal Register, NHTSA is adding specifications and qualification 
requirements for the HIII-10C to our regulation for anthropomorphic 
test devices. This rulemaking establishes performance and other 
requirements for child restraint systems heretofore not regulated by a 
safety standard, i.e., child restraints manufactured for children 
weighing 65 to 80 lb.

DATES: This final rule is effective February 27, 2014. The 
incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in the 
standard is approved by the Director of the Federal Register as of 
February 27, 2014. If you wish to petition for reconsideration of this 
rule, your petition must be received by April 12, 2012.

ADDRESSES: If you wish to petition for reconsideration of this rule, 
you should refer in your petition to the docket number of this document 
and submit your petition to: Administrator, National Highway Traffic 
Safety Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building, 
Washington, DC, 20590. For information on the Privacy Act, see 
Rulemaking Analyses and Notices section.
    For access to the docket to read background documents or comments 
received, go to http://www.regulations.gov and follow the online 
instructions for accessing the docket. You may also visit DOT's Docket 
Management Facility, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building Ground 
Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590-0001 for on-line access to 
the docket.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For technical issues, you may call Ms. 
Cristina Echemendia (Telephone: 202-366-6345) (Fax: 202-493-2990). For 
legal issues, you may call Ms. Deirdre Fujita, Office of Chief Counsel 
(Telephone: 202-366-2992) (Fax: 202-366-3820). You may send mail to 
these officials at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 
U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West 
Building, Washington, DC 20590.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This rulemaking originally had the RIN 2127-
AJ44. This final rule has a new RIN (AL10) because a September 2011 
final rule on one of the issues of the rulemaking was considered to 
have completed action on the previous RIN.
    Petitions for reconsideration of this rule: The petition will be 
placed in the docket. Anyone is able to search the electronic form of 
all documents received into any of our dockets by the name of the 
individual submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted 
on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may 
review DOT's complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register 
published on April 11, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 70; Pages 19477-78).

Table of Contents

I. Introduction
II. Summary of Rulemaking Proposals
    a. August 31, 2005 NPRM
    b. January 23, 2008 SNPRM (2008 SNPRM)
    c. November 24, 2010 SNPRM (2010 SNPRM)
III. Overview of Issues Decided in This Final Rule
IV. Agency Decisions
    a. Extend the Applicability of FMVSS No. 213
    b. Weight Ranges
    c. Performance and Other Criteria
    1. HIII-10C Dummy
    2. HIII-6C Dummy
    d. UMTRI Positioning Procedure
    e. LATCH Issues
    1. The Label
    2. Combined Weight
    3. Account for Weight of CRS
    4. Top Tether
    5. Testing with the HIII-10C
    6. Boosters
    7. Other
    f. Lead Time
    g. Mass Limit
    h. Miscellaneous Issues
    1. Housekeeping
    2. Belt Fit
    3. Shoe Size
    4. Preemption Language
V. Rulemaking Analyses and Notices

I. Introduction

    The dynamic test requirements in FMVSS No. 213 comprehensively 
assess the crashworthiness of child restraint systems (CRSs) in a 
rigorous 48 kilometers per hour (kmph) (30 miles per hour (mph)) 
frontal sled test. The assessment uses available anthropomorphic test 
devices (ATDs) (crash test dummies) representing children of different 
ages. The ATDs are regularly assessed, upgraded, replaced or 
supplemented with new ATDs by NHTSA, as needed and as new state-of-the-
art test dummies become available.
    Through the history of FMVSS No. 213, the number and sizes of ATDs 
used to assess CRSs' compliance with the standard has greatly expanded. 
Child occupants of many different ages are represented by the ATDs, to 
provide an expansive assessment of the ability of CRSs to restrain the 
children for whom the CRS manufacturer has designed the restraint.
    The agency began the FMVSS No. 213 sled test program in 1979 with a 
6-month-old child (uninstrumented) ATD and a three-year-old child 
(instrumented) ATD.\1\ In 1995, NHTSA expanded the test devices by 
replacing the 6-month-old with ATDs representing a newborn infant and a 
9-month-old child, and added a 6-year-old child instrumented ATD, the 
latter to test booster seats.\2\ In 2003, NHTSA added an instrumented 
12-month-old infant ATD to the standard in place of the uninstrumented 
9-month-old dummy, and replaced the 3-year-old child and 6-year-old 
child ATDs with their state-of-the-art Hybrid III counterparts.\3\ In 
that 2003 rulemaking, NHTSA expanded the applicability of FMVSS No. 213 
to CRSs for children who weigh up to 65 lb and added a weighted Hybrid 
III 6-year-old child ATD to test restraints recommended for children in 
the upper weight range. The agency aimed to have an array of ATDs 
representing children at or near the extremes of the weight ranges 
identified by a manufacturer as being suitable for each type of child 
restraint.
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    \1\ 44 FR 72131, December 13, 1979.
    \2\ 60 FR 35126, July 6, 1995.
    \3\ 68 FR 37620, June 24, 2003.
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    In early 2000, NHTSA asked the Society of Automotive Engineers 
(SAE) Dummy Family Task Group (DFTG) to develop a test dummy 
representative of a 10-year-old child. NHTSA had sought development of 
a test dummy between the sizes of a 6-year-old and a 12-year-old for 
several years.\4\
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    \4\ A 12-year-old is approximately the size of a 5th percentile 
adult female. There are ATDs in NHTSA's regulations representing a 
5th percentile adult female for use in its vehicle frontal and side 
impact programs. (49 CFR part 572, Subparts O and V, respectively.)

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[[Page 11627]]

Legislative Activity

    The agency's adoption of new ATDs into FMVSS No. 213 has long been 
of interest to Congress. The 1995 and 2002 rulemakings, supra, adding 
the new ATDs began from agency planned upgrades to FMVSS No. 213. 
During the course of NHTSA's development of the test dummies, 
legislative goals mirroring agency initiatives to adopt the ATDs were 
enacted.\5\ NHTSA's adoption of the ATDs in furtherance of agency goals 
also satisfied these legislative goals.
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    \5\ See, the NHTSA Authorization Act of 1991 (sections 2500-2509 
of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA), and 
the Transportation Recall Enhancement, Accountability and 
Documentation (TREAD) Act, respectively.
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    Legislative activity has likewise followed the development of an 
ATD representing a 10-year-old child. In 2002, NHTSA began evaluating 
the first production prototype of the 10-year-old child dummy that DFTG 
had developed in response to NHTSA's request.\6\ On December 4, 2002, 
Public Law 107-318, 116 Stat. 2772 was enacted (Anton's Law), which 
contained provisions for NHTSA to develop and evaluate a test dummy 
that represents a 10-year-old child for use in testing child 
restraints, and to initiate a rulemaking proceeding for the adoption of 
the dummy within 1 year following that evaluation.
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    \6\ Extensive evaluation of the dummy continued through mid-
2004. ``Technical Evaluation of the Hybrid III Ten Year Old Dummy 
(HIII-10C),'' Stammen; Vehicle Research and Test Center, National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administration (September 2004).
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    NHTSA moved promptly to fulfill Anton's Law. Activities that would 
satisfy many of the statute's mandates were already underway in NHTSA 
in 2002 and subsequently completed by NHTSA by 2005. An August 31, 2005 
NPRM (RIN 2127-AJ44) published by NHTSA was the final step in 
fulfilling the agency's obligations under Anton's Law. With that 2005 
NPRM and previous NHTSA initiatives, NHTSA fully met the mandates of 
the statute.\7\
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    \7\ The August 31, 2005 NPRM provides a detailed overview of 
NHTSA's responses to the child restraint provisions of Anton's Law. 
See 70 FR at 51721.
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Later Developments

    With the 2005 NPRM, the agency had high hopes that the HIII-10C 
would enhance FMVSS No. 213 by ensuring that booster seats and other 
CRSs recommended for older children would be robustly assessed to 
ensure sound performance in a 48 kmph (30 mph) crash when used by 
children at the upper limit of their recommended weight range, 
typically up to 80 lb. When we published the 2005 proposal to include 
the dummy in FMVSS No. 213, we proposed that booster seats must conform 
to several new requirements based on HIII-10C measurements, including a 
head injury criterion (HIC). We demonstrated in our pre-proposal 
testing that while most CRSs conformed to the new requirements, there 
were some failures, including those where HIC was exceeded. However, 
during extensive post-NPRM booster seat testing, inconsistencies in the 
test protocol revealed variability in the kinematics and measurements 
of the HIII-10C. In particular, the agency discovered that a slight 
perturbation in the test protocol could create a large change in HIC. 
The high variability in HIC measurements was attributable to a design 
feature unique to the HIII-10C in which chin-to-chest contact during 
the impact event can be excessively hard.\8\
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    \8\ This is described in detail in the January 23, 2008 
supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM).
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    Subsequently, the agency devoted substantial rulemaking and 
research efforts to try to address test variability. NHTSA investigated 
the ATD's chin-to-chest contact and developed a seating procedure that 
was proposed in an SNPRM published in 2008. Later, after analyzing 
comments opposing the SNPRM, NHTSA published a second SNPRM in 2010 
which proposed a different seating procedure, but acknowledged that HIC 
appeared unusable as an FMVSS No. 213 injury criterion when the HIII-
10C was used so positioned. Throughout the rulemaking proceeding, NHTSA 
informed the public of its research findings, concerns and ideas about 
using the HIII-10C in FMVSS No. 213, and in turn learned from comments 
from research organizations, consumer groups, CRS, vehicle, and ATD 
manufacturers, and others. Considerable effort was devoted to revising 
the test protocol to eliminate high variability in HIC.
    The endeavor has led to a new dummy positioning procedure that 
improves test repeatability with no substantial change to the HIII-10C. 
The agency expended substantial research and rulemaking resources in 
this rulemaking. The ATD appeared to be a worthwhile test instrument 
notwithstanding its problems in measuring HIC. We also wished to 
implement Anton's Law as fully as possible.
    The agency has determined that the HIII-10C is an important ATD 
that will enhance our ability to assess the performance of CRSs and 
other occupant protection systems in protecting children.\9\ In the 
accompanying 49 CFR part 572 final rule published today, we adopt the 
HIII-10C into our regulation for anthropomorphic test devices. The 
HIII-10C will provide an enhanced assessment of child restraint 
performance and is worthy of adoption into FMVSS No. 213. However, due 
to the variability in HIC measures resulting from hard chin-to-chest 
contacts, we will not assess HIC as an FMVSS No. 213 injury criterion 
when using this ATD.
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    \9\ The HIII-10C represents children of a size heretofore not 
represented by the ATDs used in NHTSA regulations. The child ATDs in 
49 CFR part 572 that NHTSA uses for testing CRSs are ATDs 
representing a newborn infant, a 12-month-old, a 3-year-old, a 6-
year-old, and a weighted 6-year-old. In 49 CFR part 572, there is 
also specified a 5th percentile adult female ATD, which is 
approximately the size of a 12-year-old.
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II. Summary of Rulemaking Proposals 10
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    \10\ For readability purposes, this section summarizes the more 
noteworthy rulemaking proposals still outstanding, which are 
resolved by this final rule. It does not summarize more minor 
proposals, such as housekeeping amendments, or issues that were 
decided in previously-published documents, such as the continued 
optional use of the Hybrid II 6-year-old dummy to test CRSs, which 
was discussed in a final rule published under RIN 2127-AJ44 on 
September 9, 2011. All outstanding proposals, including those not 
summarized here, are discussed in this preamble.
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a. August 31, 2005 NPRM

    On August 31, 2005, NHTSA published an NPRM initiating rulemaking 
proposing to amend FMVSS No. 213, Child Restraint Systems, to adopt an 
instrumented 35 kg (78 lb) Hybrid III test dummy representing a 10-
year-old child. 70 FR 51720, August 31, 2005, Docket No. NHTSA-2005-
21245 (RIN 2127-AJ44). NHTSA proposed to:
    1. Expand the definition of ``child restraint system'' in FMVSS No. 
213 to include devices designed for use in a motor vehicle or aircraft 
to restrain, seat, or position children who weigh 80 lb (36 kg) or 
less;
    2. Use the HIII-10C dummy to test belt-positioning seats and other 
child restraint systems recommended for children weighing more than 50 
lb (22.7 kg);
    3. Incorporate, with the HIII-10C, the injury criteria and other 
performance measures specified in FMVSS No. 213 for evaluating child 
restraint systems;
    4. Remove a 4.4 kg mass limit for belt-positioning seats (S5.4.3.2 
of FMVSS No. 213).

[[Page 11628]]

b. January 23, 2008 SNPRM (2008 SNPRM)

    The comments on the August 31, 2005 NPRM supported extending the 
applicability of FMVSS No. 213 to child restraints recommended for 
children up to 80 lb (36 kg), and supported having a 10-year-old dummy 
to test higher weight-rated child restraints. However, several 
commenters raised concerns about the biofidelity of the HIII-10C dummy, 
particularly with regard to the interaction of the dummy's chin with 
the upper sternal bib region covering the upper portion of a metal 
``spine box.'' Commenters said that the dummy exhibited ``chin-to-
chest'' contacts resulting in high HIC scores and high HIC variability 
when tested multiple times under the same conditions.
    In response to these comments, the agency conducted a series of 
tests with the HIII-10C dummy to investigate the factors that 
influenced chin-to-chest contact and the resulting high HIC scores and 
HIC variability. Results revealed that dummy posture was the primary 
factor contributing to HIC variation observed in testing of belt-
positioning seats.\11\ A more upright dummy posture minimized the hard 
chin-to-chest contact, which resulted in more repeatable and generally 
lower HIC values. Accordingly, the agency developed a new dummy 
positioning procedure which established dummy posture (14 degree torso 
angle \12\) and a belt positioned at specific landmarks of the dummy's 
body, and prepared an SNPRM to propose the procedure for use in FMVSS 
No. 213.
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    \11\ Detailed explanation provided in the January 23, 2008 SNPRM 
(73 FR at 3904-3905).
    \12\ In the January 23, 2008 SNPRM, infra, torso angle was 
defined as the angle between the line joining the center of gravity 
of the dummy's head to its H-point and a vertical plane (73 FR 3901, 
3907).
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    On January 23, 2008, the agency published the 2008 SNPRM.\13\ The 
document supplemented the 2005 NPRM by:
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    \13\ SNPRM for FMVSS No. 213, 73 FR 3901, Docket No. NHTSA-2007-
0048; reopening of comment period, 73 FR 15963, March 26, 2008.
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    1. Proposing dummy positioning procedures that establish dummy 
posture (14 degree torso angle) and seat belt positions based on 
specific landmarks of the dummy's body. NHTSA proposed that the dummy 
positioning procedures would be used when using the HIII-10C and the 
Hybrid III 6-year-old child dummy (HIII-6C) to test belt-positioning 
seats.
    2. Changing an earlier proposal concerning which CRSs would be 
tested with the HIII-10C test dummy. The 2008 SNPRM proposed that child 
restraints recommended for children weighing 22.7 to 29.5 kg (50 to 65 
lb) be tested with the HIII-6C dummy for performance, and with the 
weighted HIII-6C dummy for structural integrity. The HIII-10C dummy 
would be used to test CRSs recommended for children weighing more than 
29.5 kg (65 lb).

c. November 24, 2010 SNPRM (2010 SNPRM)

    The comments received on the January 23, 2008 SNPRM strongly 
opposed the 14 degree torso angle positioning procedure. Several 
commenters supported the dummy positioning procedure developed by the 
University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI) and 
urged NHTSA to adopt those procedures. However, some commenters noted 
that the UMTRI procedure results in unrealistically high HIC values 
measured by the dummy due to the more slouched positioning of the 
dummy. UMTRI suggested that NHTSA not use HIC in the testing of belt-
positioning seats with the HIII-10C until the biofidelity of the test 
dummy is improved.
    Based on an analysis of the comments to the 2008 SNPRM and other 
information, including the results of additional testing by NHTSA of 
belt-positioning seats using the UMTRI positioning procedure, NHTSA 
issued the 2010 SNPRM on November 24, 2010. The document supplemented 
the proposals of the earlier NPRMs by proposing to:
    1. Adopt a procedure for positioning the HIII-10C dummy in belt-
positioning seats based on the procedure developed by UMTRI, instead of 
the 14 degree torso upright procedure. The UMTRI procedure includes 
specifications for positioning the belt-positioning seat on the 
standard seat assembly. The 2010 SNPRM also proposed using the UMTRI 
procedure when testing with the HIII-6C in belt-positioning seats in 
FMVSS No. 213 tests.
    2. Withdraw the proposal for the HIC criterion for the HIII-10C 
dummy, until problems with the dummy that resulted in 
uncharacteristically high HIC values and HIC variability in FMVSS No. 
213 testing have been resolved.
    3. Specify that a child restraint system recommended for children 
weighing over 29.5 kg (65 lb) will not be subject to testing with the 
HIII-10C when attached to the standard seat assembly using the Lower 
Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) \14\ system. These CRSs would 
be tested with the HIII-10C while attached to the standard seat 
assembly with the seat belt system. To reduce the likelihood that a 
consumer may mistakenly use this type of CRS with LATCH, the 2010 SNPRM 
proposed to require harness-equipped CRSs recommended for children of a 
weight range that includes children weighing over 29.5 kg (65 lb), to 
be labeled with an instruction to the consumer not to use the vehicle 
LATCH system with a child weighing more than 29.5 kg (65 lb).
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    \14\ LATCH refers to Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children, a 
term that was developed by industry to refer to the child restraint 
anchorage system required to be installed in vehicles (FMVSS No. 
225). FMVSS No. 213 requires harness-equipped conventional child 
safety seats to be able to be installed in a vehicle by both a 
vehicle's LATCH system, and the vehicle's seat belt.
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Comments Received on November 24, 2010 SNPRM
    The agency received 14 comments on the 2010 SNPRM, from child 
restraint manufacturers, motor vehicle manufacturers, child passenger 
advocacy groups, and research organizations. Generally, all commenters 
expressly or implicitly supported using the UMTRI positioning procedure 
to test the HIII-10C and HIII-6C dummies in belt-positioning seats, 
agreeing that the procedure would position the ATDs in a more realistic 
seating posture than the 14 degree torso angle positioning procedure. 
JPMA asked that NHTSA not use a pelvis positioning pad referenced in 
the proposed UMTRI procedure, believing that the pad increases the 
likelihood of hard chin-to-chest contact that may result in high HIC 
values and HIC variability, and asked several technical questions 
relating to how the UMTRI procedure is conducted. Commenters expressed 
support for not adopting HIC, although several made clear their view 
that NHTSA should begin measuring HIC as soon as possible.
    In commenting on the proposal that the HIII-10C dummy would be used 
to test CRSs recommended for children weighing more than 29.5 kg (65 
lb), Britax suggested that the cut-off should be 70 lb, so that its CRS 
that is currently recommended for use with children weighing more than 
65 lb would not be tested with the HIII-10C dummy.
    A number of commenters had views on the proposed label for harness-
equipped CRSs sold for heavier children. All agreed that consumers are 
in need of information as to how heavy a child could be without 
potentially overloading the LATCH anchors. Most commenters on this 
issue supported a label, but several (including JPMA and associations 
of vehicle manufacturers) believed that, to avoid overloading the

[[Page 11629]]

LATCH anchors, the maximum child occupant weight for LATCH use 
specified on the label should be based on the combined weight of the 
CRS and the child occupant, rather than the child weight alone. On the 
other hand, Sunshine Kids, a CRS manufacturer, suggested that the 
standard should provide CRS manufacturers the ability to determine the 
maximum weight of the child the CRS can hold, if the CRS manufacturer 
could provide crash test results showing that the CRS with an ATD with 
a maximum recommended weight will remain structurally intact and will 
not exceed a 12,000 Newton (N) load on the anchors in a 35 mile per 
hour (mph) frontal barrier crash test with a 47 g deceleration pulse.
    Some commenters (including consumer advocates) supported a weight 
limit only on using the lower LATCH anchors, and not the top tether 
anchor. Several commenters (including CRS and vehicle manufacturers) 
suggested that the label ought to allow CRS manufacturers to state that 
the LATCH anchors could be used to secure a belt-positioning booster to 
the vehicle seat, to avoid having the booster become a flying 
projectile in a crash.
Differences With the 2010 SNPRM
    After reviewing the comments to the 2010 SNPRM, we have decided to 
adopt the following modifications of its proposal:
    Regarding the UMTRI procedure, we changed the proposal regarding 
use of the pelvis positioning pad, to only prepare the HIII-10C dummy 
with the pad, and not the HIII-6C dummy. The lap shield used with the 
HIII-6C dummy and the HIII-10C are the same but the dimensions of the 
drawing of the lap shield proposed in the 2010 SNPRM are reduced to 
better fit the child dummies. We added steps to the procedure preparing 
the HIII-10C dummy to set the dummy's neck and lumbar angle. This setup 
was proposed in the 2008 SNPRM.
    We did not adopt the proposed instructions on how to apply the seat 
belt on the dummy during the positioning procedure due to an oversight 
with the proposal. The proposed instructions were specific to 
continuous belts. FMVSS No. 213 does not specify a continuous belt so 
the provisions were not relevant to the FMVSS No. 213 belt system.
    Other changes are to the proposed requirements for labeling and 
written instructions, with regard to how heavy a child can be before 
LATCH should no longer be used to attach a harness-equipped CRS to the 
vehicle seat.
    These and other changes are discussed in this preamble.

III. Overview of Issues Decided in This Final Rule

    Based on our analysis of all available information, including 
comments to the 2005 NPRM, 2008 SNPRM, and 2010 SNPRM, this final rule 
amends FMVSS No. 213 in the following manner.
    (a) We extend the applicability of FMVSS No. 213 to child restraint 
systems recommended for use by children weighing 80 lb or less, from 
the current criterion of 65 lb or less.
    (b) We adopt the following injury criteria for the HIII-10C dummy 
in the sled test: chest acceleration = 60 g's; head excursion = 813 mm 
for untethered condition and 720 mm for tethered condition; and knee 
excursion = 915 mm.
    (c) This final rule adopts a procedure for positioning the HIII-6C 
and HIII-10C dummies in belt-positioning seats based on the procedure 
developed by UMTRI but without the use of the pelvis positioning pad 
for the HIII-6C dummy.
    (d) We specify our use of the HIII-10C dummy in FMVSS No. 213 
compliance tests of CRSs recommended for children weighing more than 65 
lb. We test CRSs rated for children weighing 50 to 65 lb with the HIII-
6C instrumented dummy for performance, and with the weighted HIII-6C 
uninstrumented dummy for structural integrity.
    (e) This final rule requires a label to be placed on a CRS equipped 
with internal harnesses for which the combined weight of the CRS and 
the maximum recommended child weight for use with the internal 
harnesses exceeds 65 lb. The label informs the consumer that the lower 
anchors may be used to attach the CRS to the vehicle seat up to a 
combined child and CRS weight of 65 lb when the child is restrained by 
the internal harnesses. The purpose of the label is to reduce consumer 
confusion about using lower LATCH anchorages, and to ensure that forces 
generated by the child and CRS in most crash conditions do not exceed 
the lower anchors' design limits. This final rule also specifies that 
in a compliance test, NHTSA will not attach harness-equipped CRSs to 
the standard seat assembly using the lower anchorages of the LATCH 
system, when the test involves an ATD whose weight is greater than the 
manufacturer-recommended maximum child weight for lower LATCH anchor 
use.
    (f) Other issues. This final rule also amends FMVSS No. 213 to: 
delete the mass limit of 4.4 kg for belt-positioning boosters 
(S5.4.3.2); make housekeeping amendments (e.g., remove reference to a 
9-month-old child ATD since it is no longer used in compliance tests); 
address views expressed on possible future belt fit requirements, and 
provide a lead time of two years.
    Table 1 provides a summary of the proposals underlying this final 
rule, the provisions they contained and how they progressed.
BILLING CODE 4910-59-P

[[Page 11630]]

[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR27FE12.000

BILLING CODE 4910-59-C

IV. Agency Decisions

a. Extend the Applicability of FMVSS No. 213

    There has been considerable interest over the years in expanding 
the applicability of FMVSS No. 213 to increase the likelihood that CRSs 
that are recommended for older children will perform adequately in a 
crash. This interest goes hand-in-hand with efforts to increase CRS use 
among older children who cannot adequately fit a vehicle's lap and 
shoulder belt system. The goal of expanding the applicability of FMVSS 
No. 213 is to ensure that CRSs that are recommended for children over 
the current 65 lb weight limit of the standard meet the dynamic test 
requirements of the standard.
    In the TREAD Act final rule (supra), the applicability of FMVSS No. 
213 was expanded to child restraint systems for

[[Page 11631]]

children who weigh up to 65 lb. The agency also specified the use of 
the weighted 6-year-old (62-lb) test dummy to test restraints 
recommended for children weighing 50 to 65 lb. In the TREAD Act final 
rule, the agency considered the merits of extending the standard to 
restraints recommended for use by children weighing up to 80 lb, but 
decided against that expansion because there was not then any test 
dummy that could adequately assess the dynamic performance of a child 
restraint in restraining an 80 lb child. NHTSA believed that expanding 
the standard to restraints for children weighing up to 80 lb would not 
be meaningful in the absence of a dummy of suitable size and weight 
that could assess the conformance of the restraints with the 
performance requirements of the standard.
    The HIII-10C is now available for incorporation into FMVSS No. 213. 
The agency has evaluated the test dummy, and is satisfied that the 
dummy's performance merits its use in FMVSS No. 213 compliance tests, 
subject to the condition that HIC will not be a performance criterion 
in FMVSS No. 213 when this ATD is used. In a separate final rule 
published today, we are amending 49 CFR part 572, ``Anthropomorphic 
test devices,'' to adopt the HIII-10C into subpart T.
    This final rule enhances child passenger safety by way of the 
requirements discussed below. It should be noted, however, that data 
indicate that booster seats are generally very effective items of 
equipment. Analyses of NHTSA's crash databases \15\ and insurance 
claims databases \16\ indicate that use of belt-positioning seats by 4- 
to 8-year-old children reduces the risk of moderate \17\ and greater 
severity injuries by 45 percent compared to when only seat belts are 
used.
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    \15\ Booster Seat Effectiveness Estimates Based on CDS and State 
Data, NHTSA, DOT HS811338, July 2010.
    \16\ Arbogast, K. B., Jermakian, J. S., Kellan, M.J., Durbin, D. 
R., Effectiveness of Belt-Positioning Booster Seats: An Updated 
Assessment, Pediatrics, Vol. 124, pp. 1281-1286, 2009.
    \17\ Moderate injuries are of severity level 2 in the 
Abbreviated Injury Scale (AIS).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Further, we do not expect this rule to increase costs noticeably 
because all CRSs that we tested with the HIII-10C dummy met the FMVSS 
No. 213 performance requirements adopted today. (Labeling of the CRSs 
will be revised pursuant to this rule, involving minimal costs.) Yet, 
by requiring that all future CRSs recommended for children weighing 
more than 65 lb will be tested with the 10-year-old child dummy, this 
rule will ensure that the satisfactory performance of current CRSs for 
older children will be maintained.
Comments; Agency Decision
    All commenters to the NPRMs supported extending the applicability 
of FMVSS No. 213 to child restraints recommended for children up to 80 
lb, and supported having a 10-year-old dummy to test higher-weight 
rated child restraints. With regard to the Hybrid III 10-year-old 
dummy, the concerns about the HIII-10C dummy's measurement of HIC are 
addressed by the next section below in this preamble.
    In response to the 2005 NPRM, Public Citizen (PC) requested that 
NHTSA reevaluate its weight limits for booster seats to make sure all 
children are adequately protected in motor vehicles because the average 
10-year-old today weighs more than 80 pounds and the weight of children 
is steadily increasing. PC also suggested that the 10-year-old dummy 
should be up-weighted to more closely match the mean weight of children 
today. It stated that the agency's proposed increase for recommended 
restraints does not accurately reflect the increased weight of children 
who will need to use the booster seats.
    We disagree with PC that the HIII-10C is unrepresentative and 
should be up-weighted. The HIII-10C dummy, with a weight of 77.6 lb (35 
kg), a seated height of 29 inches (in) (74 cm), and a standing height 
of 51 in (130 cm), is ideally suited to test the upper load and height 
limits of safety restraints for nearly all 9-year-old and more than 
half of 10-year-old children. The agency notes that weight and seated 
height are the most relevant parameters for child occupant injury 
assessment purposes. Weight relates to the structural integrity of the 
CRS and belt restraints. Seated height establishes the location and fit 
of the seat belts on the shoulder and on the torso as well as head 
trajectory and its forward displacement during the sled test. Being 
slightly above the average, the mass of the HIII-10C dummy is 
sufficiently suitable for testing the structural integrity of CRSs and 
assures their durability for use by children in the 6- to 10-year-old 
age range.
    We conclude that the weight and seated height of the HIII-10C are 
well-chosen for testing CRSs rated up to 80 lb. The ATD's anthropometry 
fits and is centered on the mid distribution range of physical 
dimensions of an average 10-year-old identified in the Centers for 
Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 2000 growth charts. Its weight and 
seated height are well suited to address the structural integrity and 
the belt fit of booster seats, respectively, being offered in the 
market place for those size children.\18\ The HIII-10C successfully 
fills the gap between a 6-year-old and a 12-year-old child, and 
warrants incorporation into FMVSS No. 213. Further discussion can be 
found in the 49 CFR part 572 final rule published concurrently with 
this document.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \18\ As used in FMVSS No. 213, the HIII-10C will also measure 
head and knee excursions and chest accelerations, providing a 
meaningful assessment of injury risk.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The incorporation of the HIII-10C dummy will now allow testing of 
CRSs and belt-positioning seats for children weighing more than 65 lb 
and up to 80 lb, which is a growing segment of the CRS market that 
currently is not undergoing compliance testing for performance at the 
maximum recommended weight limit. Incorporating the ATD fulfills 
NHTSA's plan to have an ATD representing children between the size of a 
6-year-old and a 12-year-old, and is as Anton's Law envisioned. 
Adopting the HIII-10C makes the regulation of CRSs for children up to 
80 lb meaningful, as the performance of the CRSs to protect larger 
children will now be dynamically tested in a rigorous sled test with an 
ATD better representative of children for whom the CRS is recommended 
than current ATDs in FMVSS No. 213.

b. Weight Ranges

    Originally, the 2005 NPRM proposed the HIII-10C be used to test 
CRSs for children over 50 lb. In its comment to that NPRM, Britax 
suggested that, due to the size of the HIII-10C, the HIII-10C dummy 
should be used for CRSs recommended for children weighing more than 65 
lb instead of 50 lb. NHTSA agreed, and in the 2008 SNPRM proposed the 
use of the HIII-10C to test CRSs recommended for use by children 
weighing more than 65 lb and the use of the HIII-6C dummy and the 
weighted HIII-6C dummy to assess the compliance of CRSs recommended for 
children in the 50 to 65 lb weight range.
Comments
    In its comment on the 2010 SNPRM, Britax requested that the 65 lb 
cut-off be increased to 70 lb, so that only CRSs recommended for 
children weighing 70 lb or more would be tested with the HIII-10C. 
Britax stated that it produces convertible \19\ CRSs recommended for 
children weighing 5 to 70 lb. The commenter stated that the HIII-10C 
weighs 8 lb more than the recommended weight range of the CRS and does 
not fit properly in the restraint. Britax stated that the proposed

[[Page 11632]]

requirement would result in the removal of such convertible CRSs from 
the market. Increasing the standard's weight cut-off to 70 lb, as 
Britax suggested, would result in this CRS not being tested with the 
HIII-10C dummy.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \19\ Britax Marathon, Boulevard and Advocate convertible seats.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Agency Response
    We are declining Britax's request. We believe that CRSs recommended 
for children weighing 65 lb or more should be tested with the HIII-10C. 
If the standard's criterion were 70 lb, child restraints rated for 
children up to 70 lb would only be tested at the upper weight range 
with an instrumented test dummy weighing just 51 lb (the HIII 6-year-
old). This would create a large gap in testing the CRS to its 
performance using an ATD. The agency seeks to limit large gaps in FMVSS 
No. 213 testing to the extent possible.
    In the past, problems arose when the gap was too large. When FMVSS 
No. 213 first adopted dynamic test requirements, two child test dummies 
were used in the test. (44 FR 72131; December 13, 1979.) One 
represented a 6-month-old child, the other a 3-year-old child. Due to 
the unavailability of other ATDs, the standard was written such that 
CRSs recommended for children weighing 0 to 20 lb were tested with the 
6-month-old ATD, and CRSs recommended for children 20 to 50 lb were 
tested with the 3-year-old ATD (weighing 33 lb).
    Alarmingly, CRSs (shield-type boosters) recommended for children 
weighing 20 to 70 lb were subsequently produced under that scenario. 
Manufacturers were recommending the CRSs for a wide range of children 
(20 to 70 lb), but were only required by FMVSS No. 213 to test them 
with just a 3-year-old (33 lb) dummy. Concerned about the ability of 
CRSs to restrain children in such a large weight/size range, NHTSA 
conducted tests on shield-type booster seats using newly-developed ATDs 
representing a 9-month-old (20 lb) child and a 6-year-old child (48 
lb).
    The test results confirmed that the assessment of performance under 
then-FMVSS No. 213 needed to be expanded. In some tests, the CRS 
ejected the 9-month-old (20 lb) dummy, or structurally failed or 
yielded excessive head excursions in tests with the 6-year-old (48 lb) 
dummy. These CRSs--all recommended for children 20 to 70 lb--were 
certified as meeting FMVSS No. 213. The problem was that the standard 
only required testing of the restraint with the 3-year-old (33 lb) test 
dummy. The standard was not assessing the CRSs at the extremes of the 
recommended weight ranges.\20\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \20\ ISTEA final rule, 60 FR 35126, July 6, 1995.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As FMVSS No. 213 evolved and more ATDs became available for 
testing, we adopted more ATDs. To the extent possible, we try to ensure 
that there are no large gaps in FMVSS No. 213 testing of CRSs, 
particularly at the extremes of recommended weight ranges.
    In the 1995 ISTEA rulemaking adding ATDs to FMVSS No. 213, NHTSA 
decided that CRSs for children weighing more than 40 lb would be tested 
with a 6-year-old (48 lb) dummy. Id. In a petition for reconsideration 
of the final rule, a CRS manufacturer asked that the weight cut-off be 
43 lb instead of 40 lb, so that its CRSs rated for children up to 43 lb 
would continue to be tested just with the 3-year-old (33 lb) dummy, 
rather than with the 6-year-old (48 lb) dummy. In a June 18, 1996, 
final rule responding to the petition, NHTSA disagreed and kept the 
cut-off at 40 lb, believing that use of the 6-year-old dummy, weighing 
48 pounds, would result in a more rigorous and better assessment of the 
CRS in protecting children for whom the CRS was recommended than a test 
with a 3-year-old dummy that weighs only 33 lb. (61 FR 30824.) That is, 
if a CRS were recommended for children up to 43 lb, it should be tested 
with the 6-year-old (48 lb) dummy as that ATD better represents the 
children for whom the CRS is recommended at the upper recommended 
weight range, than the 3-year-old dummy. Later, the CRS manufacturer 
adjusted its CRS's weight cut-off from 43 lb to 40 lb.
    We recognize that competing interests have to be balanced in 
deciding this topic. On the one hand is the interest in having children 
restrained as long as possible in a restraint mode (e.g., rear-facing, 
harness-restraint, or belt-positioning seat) rather than being 
prematurely graduated to the CRS for children in the next older age 
group. On the other hand, there is a need to assure that CRSs are 
reasonably sled tested and are structurally sound to ensure that they 
protect the children for whom the restraint is recommended, as 
advertised.
    Our increasing the cut-off over which the HIII-10C would be used, 
from 50 lb as originally proposed to 65 lb in this final rule, achieves 
a balance. It will accommodate the majority of CRS manufacturers.\21\ 
It is possible that manufacturers that lower the CRS recommended weight 
cut-off to 65 lb from some higher weight could redirect a small segment 
of children to move to a belt-positioning sooner. However, CRSs 
recommended for children weighing up to 65 lb would accommodate all 6-
year-old children and up to 93 percent of 7-year-old children. This 
covers the large majority of children whom the agency recommends be 
restrained in child restraints with harnesses until they exceed the 
recommended height and weight limit.\22\ If the weight cut-off were 70 
lb, the nearly 20-lb gap between the weight of the instrumented ATD (50 
lb, 6-year-old child test dummy) used to test the Britax CRS and the 
upper limit of the Britax CRS (70 lb) would be too large for NHTSA to 
conclude that the performance of the CRS in protecting a child weighing 
just under 70 lb was adequately assessed.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \21\ The agency does not have the resources to add an 
intermediate dummy (e.g., a 70 lb ATD) to further accommodate Britax 
on this issue, to permit them to recommend their CRS for children 
weighting up to 70 lb without being subject to testing with the 
HIII-10 C (78 lb) dummy.
    \22\ http://www.nhtsa.gov/ChildSafety/step3 The Web site (last 
accessed Sep. 6, 2011) states, ``Keep your 4 to 7 year old children 
in their FORWARD-FACING car seat with a harness until they the top 
height or weight limit allowed by your car seat's manufacturer.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In the 1996 rulemaking (61 FR 30824), we recognized that there was 
a risk that, as a result of the decision to keep the weight cut-off at 
40 lb, CRS manufacturers might revise the recommended upper weight 
limit for their convertible CRSs from 43 lb to 40 lb. The negative 
implication of this was that parents may transition their children out 
of toddler restraints to booster seats or a vehicle belt system sooner 
than when the child is more physically developed. Yet, the agency was 
also hopeful that, in time, manufacturers could develop designs that 
would enable a harness-equipped CRS to meet the performance 
requirements in FMVSS No. 213 when tested with the 6-year-old child 
dummy, thereby allowing the manufacturers to recommend their CRSs for 
children weighing more than 40 lb (resulting in children being kept in 
the harnessed-equipped CRS until they are older).
    Following the rulemaking, we have found first the former, then the 
latter, was realized. CRS labels were initially revised such that 
convertible (harness-equipped) restraints were recommended for children 
only up to 40 lb. Later, newer designs emerged of convertible 
restraints with upper weight limits up to 50 lb or 65 lb. The newer 
CRSs have been designed to meet FMVSS No. 213 when tested with the 6-
year-old ATD.
    We do not believe that this decision will have negative safety 
consequences of any note. Manufacturers of CRSs such as the one Britax 
described could revise the weight cut-off downward to 65 lb so

[[Page 11633]]

as to avoid being tested with the HIII-10C, rather than completely 
removing the CRS from the market. If a harnessed CRS is needed for 
children weighing above 65 lb, experience has shown that CRS 
manufacturers could fill that need. We are optimistic that 
manufacturers that see a need will be able to redesign their harness-
equipped CRSs such that the CRS would be able to meet FMVSS No. 213 
when tested with the HIII-10C dummy.
    This decision to make the cut-off 65 lb will benefit safety by 
better ensuring that CRS recommended for use with children weighing 
more than 65 lb will be dynamically assessed with an ATD that 
represents the older children for whom the CRS is recommended. 
Accordingly, the proposed weight categories are adopted.
    The final rule's weight categories are illustrated in Table 2.

                  Table 2--Final Rule Weight Categories
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                          Are compliance tested by NHTSA
 CRS Recommended for use by children of     with these ATDs  (Subparts
             these sizes--                  refer to 49 CFR part 572)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Weight not greater than 5 kg (0 to 11    Newborn (subpart K).
 lb), or height not greater than 650 mm.
Weight greater than 5 but not greater    Newborn (subpart K), CRABI
 than 10 kg (11 to 22 lb) or height       (subpart R).
 greater than 650 mm but not greater
 than 850 mm.
Weight greater than 10 kg but not        CRABI (subpart R), HIII 3-year-
 greater than 18 kg (22 to 40 lb), or     old (subpart P).
 height greater than 850 mm but not
 greater than 1100 mm.
Weight greater than 18 kg (40 lb) but    HIII 6-year-old (subpart N) or
 not greater than 22.7 kg (50 lb), or     HII 6-year-old (subpart I)
 height greater than 1100 mm but not      (manufacturer's option).
 greater than 1250 mm.
Weight greater than 22.7 kg (50 lb) but  HIII 6-year-old (subpart N) or
 not greater than 30 kg (65 lb), or       HII 6-year-old (subpart I)
 greater than 1100 mm but not greater     (manufacturer's option), and
 than 1250 mm.                            weighted HIII 6-year-old
                                          (subpart S).
Weight greater than 30 kg (65 lb), or    HIII 10-year-old (subpart T).*
 height greater than 1250 mm.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
* No HIC measured with HIII-10C.

c. Performance and Other Criteria

1. HIII-10C Dummy
    The 2005 NPRM proposed performance criteria for the HIII-10-year-
old dummy similar to the current FMVSS No. 213 criteria, because the 
agency was not aware of any injuries unique to children in booster 
seats \23\ that would necessitate separate and differing injury 
criteria limits. The specific injury criteria measurement maximums for 
the HIII-10-year old dummy were: HIC36 = 1000; chest 
acceleration = 60 g's (3 millisecond clip); head excursion = 813 
millimeters (mm) for untethered condition, 720 mm for tethered 
condition (if applicable); and knee excursion = 915 mm. We also 
proposed applying other FMVSS No. 213 requirements to CRSs rated for 
children who weigh up to 80 lb, including structural integrity, force 
distribution, installation, child restraint webbing and belt assembly 
requirements, and flammability requirements. (The agency also proposed 
to eliminate S5.4.3.2's limit on the mass of belt-positioning boosters. 
This provision will be discussed later in this preamble.)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \23\ NHTSA focused on booster seats in the NPRM because in 2005 
CRSs for children weighing 65 to 80 lb were primarily booster seats.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The 2008 and 2010 SNPRMs added to or superseded some of the 2005 
NPRM proposals on performance criteria. In response to comments to the 
2005 NPRM pointing out high HIC values and HIC variability related to 
hard chin-to-chest contact in FMVSS No. 213 testing with the HIII-10C 
dummy, the 2010 SNPRM proposed not to adopt the HIC criterion for tests 
conducted with the HIII-10C dummy in all CRSs. Correcting an oversight, 
the 2008 NPRM proposed to amend S5.2.1.2 of FMVSS No. 213 to specify 
that the HIII-10C would not be used to determine the applicability of 
the head support surface requirements of S5.2.1.1. Also in response to 
comments, the 2010 SNPRM proposed to exclude CRSs tested with the HIII-
10C from a requirement that the CRS must meet the requirements of FMVSS 
No. 213 when installed by means of the lower anchorags of a LATCH 
system.
Comments
    In general, the commenters supported the proposal not to adopt HIC 
when using the HIII-10C. UMTRI, Consumers Union (CU), Evenflo and JPMA 
concurred with not using HIC until the uncharacteristically hard chin-
to-chest contact in the dummy has been corrected. JPMA agreed with 
applying existing FMVSS No. 213 injury criteria and dynamic performance 
measures for the HIII-10C dummy except for the HIC.
    Advocates for Highway Safety (Advocates), the American Academy of 
Pediatrics (AAP) and SafeRideNews also concurred with not using HIC but 
requested that NHTSA expedite improving the dummy's biofidelity to 
incorporate HIC into the injury requirements. Advocates and 
SafeRideNews also requested that NHTSA include a HIC incorporation date 
in the final rule. Advocates believed that, without the implementation 
of HIC, quantification of the risk of head injury to children in belt-
positioning seats will be limited to head excursion which, the 
commenter believed, provides only a ``rudimentary surrogate'' measure 
of contact and non-contact head injuries.
    In supporting the proposal, UMTRI believed that NHTSA's injury data 
analysis cited in the SNPRM did not identify a significant injury 
problem that could be addressed by the inclusion of HIC in an FMVSS No. 
213 booster seat test, regardless of the biofidelity of the dummy. It 
suggested that efforts to reduce the number of head injuries in the 
field should focus on reducing head excursion rather than reducing the 
linear head acceleration used to calculate HIC.
    CU stated its belief that NHTSA's not adopting HIC at this point is 
warranted when testing with the HIII-10C. CU stated that it too 
concluded that the HIC values obtained from its sled tests (which are 
similar to FMVSS No. 213) could not be used, due in part to the 
potential variability of the data. CU believed that not adopting HIC is 
``far preferable to suspending the use of the higher weight dummies 
altogether, as those dummies serve a key purpose in evaluating other 
potential injury criteria and structural integrity of seats recommended 
for higher weight children.''
Agency Response
HIC
    For the reasons explained in the 2010 SNPRM, this final rule does 
not adopt the use of HIC as an injury measure for the HIII-10C dummy in 
FMVSS No. 213 tests at this time. CRSs tested with the

[[Page 11634]]

current HIII-10C ATD can produce HIC values in the ATD indicating an 
unacceptable risk of head injury, even though head injuries due to 
chin-to-chest contact are not occurring in the real world.
    NHTSA analyzed the National Automotive Sampling System (NASS) 
Crashworthiness Data System (CDS) data files for the years 1999 to 2008 
to better understand real world injuries among children in different 
restraint conditions. The risk and source of injury to different body 
regions was also determined. The sampled data consisted of children, 5-
12 years of age, in rear seats of light passenger vehicles that were 
involved in non-rollover frontal towaway crashes. Weighting factors in 
NASS/CDS were applied to the sample data to represent national 
estimates of towaway crashes. The weighted data consisted of 910,308 
(1940 unweighted sample) children of which 49 percent were 5-7 year 
olds and 51 percent were 8-12 year olds. Among the 5-7 year olds, 69 
percent were using vehicle seat belts, 22 percent were in harness CRS 
or belt-positioning seat, and 9 percent were unrestrained. Among the 8-
12 year olds, 90 percent were using the vehicle belts, 1 percent was in 
harness CRS or belt-positioning seat, and 9 percent were unrestrained.
    The risk of AIS 2+ injury\24\ for children 5-7 years old was 5.2 
percent for unbelted children, 1.2 percent for belted children and 0.9 
percent for children in CRSs. The AIS2+ injury risk for children 8-12 
years old was 8.1 percent for unbelted children and 1.3 percent for 
belted children. There were no cases of children 8-12 years old in 
CRSs. Both age groups showed a decrease of injury risk when using 
restraints (belt or CRS).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \24\ AIS 2+ injuries are those of moderate or greater severity 
according to the Abbreviated Injury Scale (AIS); AIS 2+ include 
injury severity levels: 2--moderate, 3--serious, 4--severe, 5--
critical, 6--unsurvivable.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The most common AIS 2+ injuries among children restrained (vehicle 
seat belt or CRS) in rear seats were to the head and face (48 percent), 
followed by upper extremities (19 percent), torso (17 percent) and 
lower extremities (16 percent). The most-common known contacts for 
AIS2+ head injuries to 5-12 year old children restrained by vehicle 
seat belts or CRS (including belt-positioning seat) was the seat back 
(50 percent). There was only one case in this sample of restrained 
children where an AIS 2+ head injury occurred due to self-contact. 
Further examination of this particular case indicated that it involved 
a 7 year-old child restrained with a vehicle seat belt. The child's 
head contacted his/her knee resulting in an AIS 2-severity concussion.
    The results of this real-world data analysis indicate that the 
injury risk is substantially reduced when the child is restrained by 
vehicle seat belts or in child restraints. The results show that most 
head injuries in restrained children are caused by contact with the 
seat back. Only one head injury case was associated with self contact 
(head contact with knee) but no cases were reported where there was 
chin-to-chest contact that resulted in a head injury.
    These data indicate that the high HIC values measured by the HIII-
10C dummy in laboratory sled tests due to chin-to-chest contact are not 
replicating a real world injury mechanism. Children are not being 
injured by chin-to-chest contact.
    Another reason we have decided not to use HIC as a criterion when 
using the HIII-10C dummy to test belt-positioning seats is UMTRI's 
information demonstrating that HIC can be reduced by poor shoulder belt 
placement.\25\ UMTRI found in sled tests that when the shoulder belt 
slips off the HIII-10C dummy shoulder, the chin-to-chest contact did 
not occur because the dummy rolls out of the shoulder belt and moves 
forward. As a result, the HIC value was low but head excursion 
increased as the dummy's upper torso was not restrained by the shoulder 
belt. Although head excursion increased in situations where the 
shoulder belt slipped off the dummy, the values were still 
substantially within compliance limits, therefore giving a ``passing'' 
value to the belt-positioning seat. These data demonstrated that using 
HIC as an injury measure may encourage poor belt routing designs that 
place the shoulder belt more outboard, which could allow the dummy to 
roll out of the belt in a sled test.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \25\ Klinich, K.D., Reed, M.P., Ritchie, N.L., Manary, M.A., 
Schneider, L.W., Rupp, J.D., ``Assessing Child Belt Fit, Volume II: 
Effect of Restraint Configuration, Booster Seat Designs, Seating 
Procedure, and Belt Fit on the Dynamic Response of the Hybrid III 10 
YO ATD in Sled Tests,'' September 2008, UMTRI-2008-49-2.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    NHTSA will focus efforts to adopt a head injury criterion as soon 
as possible. However, we will not set a date by which the HIC 
requirement will be adopted, as Advocates suggested. As noted in the 
2010 SNPRM and earlier in this document, the agency has research 
projects underway to improve the capability of child dummies to assess 
CRS performance.\26\ After the agency evaluates these improvements in 
the HIII-10C dummy, they will be considered for incorporation into 
FMVSS No. 213 and part 572. At the time that the current dummy 
biofidelity concerns are addressed, the agency will consider adopting 
HIC in the agency's compliance tests. A termination date in the 
standard would cause confusion, as HIC would not be adopted into the 
standard without a rulemaking proceeding providing notice of and an 
opportunity to comment on the adoption of the improved ATD and HIC.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \26\ The near-term Phase I upgrades to the HIII-6C and the HIII-
10C dummies that are expected to be completed in the 2013 timeframe 
include improvements in the biofidelity of the dummy kinematics. The 
Phase II research is directed toward developing biomechanical 
response data for developing future improved child dummies. The 
Phase III of this research includes design, development, and 
evaluation of a new prototype 3, 6 and 10-year-old child dummies 
which is expected to be completed in the 2015 timeframe.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The agency is not adopting the Alliance's recommendation to limit 
the HIC calculation to periods prior to chin-to-chest contact. We do 
not agree that the timing of chin-to-chest contact can be determined by 
the calculation of external forces applied to the head. We examined 
such an approach in detail in our research tests and found it difficult 
to determine the time of chin-to-chest contact in a definitive manner.
    SafeRideNews inquired why HIC would not be adopted in tests of the 
HIII-10C in harnessed CRSs, when the problematic dummy readings 
occurred with the dummy in belt-positioning boosters. In response, the 
agency did not conduct an evaluation of the HIII-10C dummy in harness-
equipped CRSs due to unavailability of harness-equipped CRSs rated for 
children weighing more than 65 pounds at the time of testing. However, 
the agency believes that there is a likelihood of uncharacteristically 
hard chin-to-chest contact using the HIII-10C in CRSs with harnesses. 
In tests with the HIII-10C dummy restrained in a CRS with a harness, 
the dummy's chest is restrained by the harness, letting the head move 
and rotate forward in a similar manner as when it is tested restrained 
in a belt-positioning seat. Accordingly, we are not adopting HIC for 
tests of the HIII-10C in all CRSs.
    With this decision, other problems the commenters raised concerning 
the HIC measurement in FMVSS No. 213 are moot.
Excursion
    For the reasons provided in the notices of proposed rulemaking, we 
have adopted the proposal to measure head and knee excursions. 
Measuring the ATD's head excursion is an appropriate metric for 
evaluating belt-positioning seat performance. We believe that the HIII-
10C exhibits good

[[Page 11635]]

biofidelity for measuring head and knee excursion and that measuring a 
CRS's ability to limit excursions and chest acceleration provides a 
meaningful assessment of the protective capabilities of the CRS.
    As discussed in the 2010 SNPRM (75 FR at 71655), in 2008, Ash et 
al.\27\ published results of a study comparing the responses of a 
pediatric cadaver restrained by a three-point belt with that of a HIII-
10C dummy in frontal sled tests. The cadaver sled test was replicated 
using the HIII-10C dummy, and the kinematics of the dummy and cadaver 
were compared, along with the accelerations of the head, shoulder and 
lap belt loads of the cadaver and dummy. (Due to anthropometric and 
age-equivalent differences between the cadaver and the dummy, geometric 
scaling was performed on the signals based on the seated height and 
material properties.)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \27\ Ash, JH, Sherwood, CP, Abdelilah, Y, Crandall, JR, Parent, 
DP, Kallieris, D., ``Comparison of Anthropomorphic Test Dummies with 
a Pediatric Cadaver Restrained by a Three-point Belt in Frontal Sled 
Tests,'' Proceedings of the 21st ESV Conference, June 2009.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The study showed similarities in the shoulder belt and lap belt 
forces and head excursions of HIII-10C and the scaled pediatric 
cadaver. The head excursions between the ATD and the scaled cadaver 
were similar, although there were differences in how the head reached 
its maximum excursion point. The T1 vertebra (base of the neck) of the 
cadaver had greater forward travel than that of the dummy while the 
dummy experienced greater rotation at the base of the neck than the 
cadaver. These differences in kinematics were attributed to the rigid 
thoracic spine of the dummy, along with extensive bending at the 
cervical and thoracic spine junction. The greater neck rotation at the 
base of the neck of the dummy compared to the cadaver led to greater 
angular velocity of the head. This greater head velocity, coupled with 
the stiff chin-to-chest interaction reported by NHTSA,\28\ resulted in 
significantly higher HIC values for the dummy than that expected based 
on field injury risk.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \28\ Stammen, J., Sullivan, L., NHTSA Vehicle Research and Test 
Center, ``Development of a Hybrid III 6 Yr. Old and 10 Yr. Old Dummy 
Seating Procedure for Booster Seat Testing,'' January 2008, Docket 
NHTSA-2007-0048.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Limiting head excursion will provide protection to the child 
occupant. We strongly disagree with Advocates that a head excursion 
limit is only a ``rudimentary'' surrogate measure of contact and non-
contact head injuries. As discussed above, most head injuries to 8- to 
12-year-old children are contact injuries and are due to impact with 
the vehicle interior. Also discussed above was the similarity between 
the shoulder belt and lap belt forces and head excursions of the HIII-
10C and a scaled pediatric cadaver. Therefore, we believe a limit on 
the excursion of the HIII-10C dummy's head in FMVSS No. 213 sled tests 
will mitigate the risk of head contact with interior surfaces in 
frontal crashes, and thereby result in reduced risk of head injury to 
heavier children restrained in CRSs. For that reason also, the agency 
disagrees with JPMA's position that the HIII-10C dummy is only 
appropriate for evaluating the structural integrity of the CRS.
    IIHS asked whether the head excursion limits are adequate to 
prevent children's heads from striking forward structures, especially 
in the prevention of children sitting in back seats from striking front 
seats. CHOP recommended that NHTSA consider the head excursions of the 
HIII-10C as a minimum estimate of the true head excursion.
    In response, the agency is currently reexamining \29\ how well the 
test parameters of the FMVSS No. 213 sled test replicate the real 
world, including test velocity, excursion limits, and the test bench 
seat.\30\ Among other things, this research, targeted for completion in 
2013, will help the agency determine if the current head excursion 
limits need to be revised. NHTSA is also working on improving the 
biofidelity of the HIII-6C and -10C dummies by implementing revisions 
to the shoulder, thoracic spine, and neck which can be retrofitted into 
both the HIII-6C and -10C dummies. We will investigate how these 
revisions will affect head and neck kinematics of the two dummies.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \29\ The representativeness of the seat assembly and excursion 
limit were examined by NHTSA in the rulemaking responding to the 
TREAD Act. 68 FR 37620.
    \30\ See, NHTSA Vehicle Safety and Fuel Economy Rulemaking and 
Research Priority Plan 2011--2013, March 2011, Docket No. NHTSA-
2009-0108-0032.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In the meantime, the agency will adopt the head excursion proposed 
in the NPRM. The HIII-10C dummy is a reasonable and valuable tool for 
establishing the maximum head excursion limits.
    In a comment to the 2005 NPRM, Advocates stated that children are 
not adults and should have injury criteria limits scaled to levels 
lower than those applied to adults. Advocates disagreed with NHTSA's 
tentative conclusion that ``given the effectiveness of booster seats 
currently in use, the proposed injury values would be appropriate to 
ensure continued effectiveness of child restraints recommended for 
children weighting up to 80 pounds.'' Advocates stated that greater 
benefits can be obtained if appropriate injury criteria are tailored 
for children in this age group. In contrast, Graco stated its 
preference toward the application of the same criteria across all 
weight ranges and crash test dummies.
    In response, it should be noted that in the TREAD Act rulemaking 
(final rule, 68 FR 37620), NHTSA considered adopting the scaled injury 
criteria adopted by FMVSS No. 208. NHTSA proposed that the FMVSS No. 
208's scaled HIC limits of 39015, 57015 and 
70015 be incorporated into FMVSS No. 213 for tests with the 
CRABI 12-month-, and Hybrid III 3- and 6-year-old dummies, 
respectively. However, NHTSA decided against adopting the scaled injury 
criteria because the agency was unable to confirm the existence of a 
safety problem that the scaled injury limits of FMVSS No. 208 would 
remedy. Relatedly, not enough was known about what modifications to 
child restraints could be made for the restraints to meet the proposed 
injury limits. In balancing the effects of meeting the scaled injury 
criteria against the possible impacts on the price of restraints, the 
agency determined that the scaled injury limits should not be added to 
FMVSS No. 213 at that time. (See 68 FR at 37649.)
    We continue to believe that the HIC limit of 1000 is appropriate 
for FMVSS No. 213. However, as NHTSA continuously considers potential 
improvements to FMVSS No.213, the agency has a series of research 
projects to generate improved response data for the head, neck, thorax, 
abdomen, and pelvis for future child dummies. NHTSA will continue to 
support and monitor this ongoing research and will consider the 
findings of this research in its efforts to enhance child passenger 
protection.
Chest Acceleration
    The HIII-10C satisfactorily measures chest acceleration, which is a 
performance criterion adopted by this final rule. A chest acceleration 
limit is established in FMVSS No. 213 to ensure that the CRS safely 
manages the crash energy of the 48 kmph (30 mph) crash simulated by the 
FMVSS No. 213 sled test. Chest acceleration measurement evaluates how 
well the child restraint and the seat belts allow the occupant to 
``ride down,'' or absorb, the crash forces over a period of time in a 
manner that avoids injury.\31\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \31\ The concept of ``ride down'' can be understood in baseball 
terms. When you move your hand rearward while catching a baseball, 
you are ``riding down'' the force from the ball and do not feel any 
pain due to the impact of the ball on your hand. If you held your 
hand stationary while catching the ball, the impact on your hand 
would be painful. With the chest g limit in FMVSS No. 213, the CRS 
will have to dissipate the crash forces in a controlled manner, so 
that the child will have a greater likelihood of safely riding down 
the crash forces.

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[[Page 11636]]

Abdominal Injury
    The agency did not propose an abdominal injury criterion in this 
rulemaking. The 2005 NPRM and 2010 SNPRM discussed some of the agency's 
research projects that are exploring changes to the ATDs to measure 
abdominal loads.
    In response to Advocates' comment that NHTSA should adopt the 
Abdominal Injury Ratio (AIR) injury criterion at this point until 
research on an instrumented abdomen is completed or an alternative 
abdominal injury measure established, there is not enough information 
at this time to support the AIR criterion. NHTSA discussed in the NPRM 
the development of AIR but did not propose the AIR criterion. As stated 
in the 2005 NPRM, we will continue to explore different techniques to 
measure abdominal injury, such as measuring abdominal loads directly 
with an abdominal insert under development. This issue is discussed in 
more detail in the accompanying 49 CFR part 572 final rule published 
today.
    We are hopeful that the instrumented abdominal insert under 
development could be retrofitted into the existing HIII-6C and HIII-10C 
dummies. The goal is for the abdominal insert to provide direct 
measurement of abdominal loads on the dummies and facilitate the 
agency's ability to determine abdominal injury and submarining 
potential in frontal sled tests. However, adopting an abdominal injury 
measure at this time would be premature.
    For immediate use now, the agency has adopted the use of a 
correlate to abdominal injuries, i.e., knee excursion. This final rule 
for FMVSS No. 213 imposes limits on knee excursion and head excursion 
for the HIII-10C. The limit on knee excursion prevents restraint 
manufacturers from controlling head excursion by designing their 
restraints so that children submarine excessively during a crash. The 
agency has observed a strong correlation between knee excursion and 
submarining in the child dummies.\32\
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    \32\ Klinich, K., Reed, M., Orton, N., Manary, M., Rupp, J., 
``Optimizing Protection for Rear Seat Occupants: Assessing Booster 
Performance with Realistic Belt Geometry Using the Hybrid III 6YO 
ATD,'' UMTRI Report, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, March 
2011.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The agency is not proposing to test the dummies seated in an out-
of-position state (i.e., slouched position). The agency believes out-
of-position testing would unnecessarily increase the testing burden. We 
also believe that achieving an acceptable, repeatable, and reproducible 
out- of-position test would take a substantial amount of time and 
agency resources due to the difficulty of positioning the dummy in a 
consistent manner, when not seated as intended. We have not found a 
safety need that would justify further complications and delays in this 
rulemaking that would result from developing out-of-position 
requirements.
2. HIII-6C Dummy
    We do not agree with the suggestion from Evenflo to suspend the use 
of HIC for the HIII-6C dummy. Some CRS manufacturers are using the 
HIII-6C dummy to certify the compliance of their CRSs to FMVSS No. 213 
and have found the dummy to be a satisfactory test instrument even with 
the use of HIC as an injury measure. The manufacturers have developed 
products that are able to meet the HIC criterion and that are able to 
limit hard chin-to-chest contact of the ATD. We do not find good reason 
to suspend the criterion for those products.
    We realize that, for some manufacturers of products, using the 
HIII-6C dummy to certify the product has been problematic. The agency 
believes it would be prudent to improve the HIII-6C dummy to make it 
more useful as an FMVSS No. 213 test device before making its use 
mandatory. On September 9, 2011 (76 FR 55825), NHTSA issued a final 
rule that permits, at the manufacturer's option, the use of either the 
Hybrid II 6-year-old child dummy (H2-6C) or the HIII-6C dummy in 
compliance tests of CRSs. Products that are currently certified as 
meeting FMVSS No. 213 when tested with the H2-6C need not be removed 
from the market, contrary to what Evenflo suggests. Therefore, we see 
no need to suspend the use of HIC for the HIII-6C dummy.

d. UMTRI Positioning Procedure

    Generally described, the UMTRI procedure, developed for the HIII-6C 
and HIII-10C dummies, first involves centering the belt-positioning 
seat on the seating position of the test bench seat. A 30 lb (133 
Newton (N)) force is then applied to push the belt-positioning seat 
rearward into the test bench seat. The dummy is prepared with a lap 
shield and a pelvis positioning pad before being positioned on the 
belt-positioning seat. The lap shield is placed on the ATD's lap to 
keep the lap belt from intruding into a gap that the Hybrid III ATDs 
have between the pelvis flesh and thigh flesh. A pelvis positioning 
pad, placed behind the dummy, is used to help position the dummy with a 
slight slouch, which allows the dummy to adopt a posture similar to a 
child seated in a relaxed position. The dummy is positioned and 
centered on the belt-positioning seat or other CRS and is pushed 
rearward by applying a 40 lb (177 N) force on the dummy's lower pelvis 
and the thorax. The dummy's knees are placed pelvis width apart. These 
steps help the dummy achieve a ``natural'' seating position on the 
belt-positioning seat.
    The UMTRI dummy positioning procedure results in a more slouched 
dummy when compared to the 2008 SNPRM procedure using the same belt-
positioning seat model. The slouched dummy, replicating a child in a 
relaxed position, results in higher HIC values than if the dummy were 
in a more upright position.
Comments
    All but one of the commenters were supportive of using the UMTRI 
positioning procedure to test the HIII-6C and HIII-10C dummies in belt-
positioning seats, believing that the procedure would position the ATDs 
in a more realistic seating posture than the 14 degree torso angle 
positioning procedure. Several commenters did not support the UMTRI 
positioning procedure's inclusion of a pelvis positioning pad.
    Evenflo opposed the inclusion of the UMTRI positioning procedure 
into FMVSS No. 213. NHTSA had stated in the 2010 SNPRM that the UMTRI 
dummy positioning procedure resulted in the highest torso angles (i.e., 
a more slouched dummy) when compared to the 2008 SNPRM procedure using 
the same belt-positioning seat model, resulting in higher HIC values. 
Consistent with that observation, in its comments Evenflo stated that 
it believes that the UMTRI procedure yields higher HIC values, and that 
some products that are currently compliant using the FMVSS No. 213 
procedure may have to be removed from the market.
Agency Response
    After evaluating the comments and all available information, the 
agency has decided to adopt the UMTRI dummy positioning procedure for 
the HIII-6C and HIII-10C dummies in belt-positioning seats, with the 
exception of the provision for use of the pelvis positioning pad for 
the HIII-6C dummy.
    The UMTRI dummy positioning procedure was developed from a 
laboratory study funded by NHTSA. In this study, UMTRI measured the

[[Page 11637]]

postures of 44 boys and girls 5 to 12 years in age in five different 
belt-positioning seats and a vehicle seat.\33\ Using these data, UMTRI 
developed a positioning procedure for the HIII-6C and the HIII-10C 
dummies such that the dummy posture was representative of the average 
posture of children of similar size in the belt-positioning seats. Due 
to differences in child and dummy anthropometry, a pelvis positioning 
pad placed behind the dummy was needed to help position the dummy with 
a posture similar to that of a similar-size child seated in a relaxed 
position in a belt-positioning seat.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \33\ Reed, M., Ebert-Hamilton, S., Klinich, K., Manary, M., 
Rupp, J., ``Assessing Child Belt Fit, Volume I: Effects of Vehicle 
Seat and Belt Geometry on Belt Fit,'' University of Michigan 
Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI) Report to NHTSA, September 
2008, http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/64459/1/102442.pdf (last accessed Sept. 6, 2011).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We have determined that the UMTRI procedure should be incorporated 
into FMVSS No. 213 for the reasons explained in the 2010 SNPRM. The 
UMTRI procedure is relatively easy to implement, and does not require 
numerous positioning iterations as did the procedure proposed by the 
2008 SNPRM. The procedure is very similar to the procedure NHTSA 
currently uses to position ATDs in child restraints for the FMVSS No. 
213 compliance tests. However, the UMTRI procedure includes additional 
steps throughout the procedure, which facilitates more control of the 
CRS, the ATD, and the positioning of the seat belt, which results in 
reduced variability in the test procedure.
    The UMTRI procedure lets the belt-positioning booster design 
dictate the posture of the dummy and the belt routing, so it results in 
a more accurate assessment of the CRS's characteristics than a 
procedure (proposed in the 2008 SNPRM) which tries to achieve a rigid 
positioning of the dummy in the CRS. The UMTRI procedure lets the dummy 
replicate a posture a child would adopt in a relaxed, seated position.
    Importantly, the UMTRI procedure showed reasonable repeatability 
for all injury measures (with the exception of HIC). See discussion in 
the 2010 SNPRM, 75 FR at 71652-71653. (The HIII-10C dummy's neck and 
lumbar spine can be adjusted to different preset angles. To control for 
extraneous variables, this final rule is specifying setting the 
adjustment angle for the dummy's neck at SP-16 \34\ and that for the 
lumbar spine at SP-12.\35\)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \34\ See Figure 20 of the ``Procedure for Assembly, Disassembly, 
and Inspection (PADI) of the HIII-10C,'' August 2011, which has been 
placed in the docket of the 49 CFR part 572 final rule published 
today to accompany this final rule.
    \35\ See Figure 45 of the PADI document, supra.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    With regard to Evenflo's comment, this final rule does not apply 
the UMTRI procedure to CRSs other than those tested with the HIII-6C 
and the HIII-10C ATDs. With regard to the HIII-6C, this final rule does 
not specify use of the pelvic positioning pad with the HIII-6C dummy 
(see discussion in next section below). With regard to the HIII-10C, 
this final rule does not adopt the HIC criterion. To our knowledge, 
with those allowances in this final rule, no product that is currently 
compliant using the FMVSS No. 213 procedure will become non-compliant. 
Thus, we believe that Evenflo's concerns about the UMTRI procedure have 
been addressed.
Pelvis Positioning Pad
    JPMA opposed the pelvis positioning pad for testing belt-
positioning seats with both the HIII-6C and the HIII-10C dummies, 
stating that the pelvis positioning pad adds another variable into the 
testing procedures and would increase the pre-test torso angle of the 
dummies, which would increase the likelihood of hard chin-to-chest 
contact, thus exacerbating the variability of HIC scores. Evenflo also 
opposed the pelvis positioning pad, stating that, while there may be 
some evidence that children may sit more reclined than the test dummy, 
using the pad results in an artificial orientation that would be 
inconsistent with manufacturer's instructions. Evenflo added that the 
additional recline of the dummy may exacerbate the propensity for high 
HIC scores as a result of excessive neck movement and/or hard chin-to-
chest contact during the dynamic test.
Agency Response Regarding the Pad and the HIII-6C
    This final rule does not specify the use of the pelvis positioning 
pad for tests with the HIII-6C dummy.
    We recognize that some manufacturers are currently using the HIII-
6C dummy to certify the compliance of their CRSs to FMVSS No. 213, and 
that they are positioning the dummy, and measuring HIC, as currently 
required by FMVSS No. 213. The UMTRI positioning procedure without the 
pelvis positioning pad is very similar to the method of positioning the 
dummy in a belt-positioning seat specified in FMVSS No. 213. We have 
decided to keep the UMTRI procedure as close as possible to the present 
FMVSS No. 213 procedure, so that manufacturers currently using the 
HIII-6C dummy to certify the compliance of their CRSs to FMVSS No. 213 
will not have to alter their CRS designs to certify compliance using 
the UMTRI positioning procedure with the HIII-6C dummy.
    We agree with JPMA and Evenflo that the presence of the pelvis pad 
may result in a greater dummy torso angle than the current specified 
positioning procedure in FMVSS No. 213. Since the agency sled tests 
indicated that the dummy's torso angle affects the HIC values 
measured--higher torso angle may result in higher and more variable HIC 
values and a greater propensity for submarining--we agree with JPMA and 
Evenflo that the pelvis positioning pad may exacerbate the propensity 
for high HIC scores. So as not to magnify the HIC scores in this 
manner, we will not use the pelvis positioning pad with the HIII-6C 
ATD.
Agency Response Regarding the Pad and the HIII-10C
    This final rule will use the pelvis positioning pad for the HIII-
10C dummy in the UMTRI positioning procedure, as proposed in the 2010 
SNPRM.
    Since this final rule does not apply the HIC criterion to tests 
with the HIII-10C dummy, the concerns raised by the commenters that the 
pelvis positioning pad results in higher HIC measures in tests with the 
HIII-10C are moot.
    Evenflo believes that the pelvis positioning pad creates an 
artificial orientation that would be inconsistent with manufacturer's 
instructions, and contrary to NHTSA's general practice to test CRSs in 
the manner set forth in the owner's manual. NHTSA disagrees that the 
orientation is artificial. The UMTRI laboratory test data shows that 
the pelvis positioning pad allows the dummy to adopt a posture similar 
to that of a child of a similar size in a belt-positioning booster 
seat. We believe that the pelvis positioning pad enhances the 
representativeness of the HIII-10C ATD of children for whom the CRS is 
recommended, and makes for a more robust assessment of the 
effectiveness of the CRS in protecting a child occupant.\36\
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    \36\ The desire to maximize the representativeness of the test 
dummy must be balanced with other factors. With regard to the HIII-
6C dummy, HIC is still measured. NHTSA has determined that the HIC 
measurements would not be realistic reflections of the ability of 
the CRS to protect the child occupant if the dummy depicted a child 
in a relaxed position, i.e., if the pelvic positioning pad were 
used. Thus, for the HIII-6C, the agency has decided that, in order 
to obtain a valid HIC measurement, we will not to use the pelvic 
positioning pad to place the dummy in the ``relaxed'' position.

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[[Page 11638]]

    This final rule also slightly modifies the specifications for the 
pelvis positioning pad from that proposed in the 2010 SNPRM. The final 
rule specifications are more general than the proposal, so as to 
provide flexibility in selecting material for the pelvis positioning 
pad while ensuring repeatable and reproducible performance. The 
compression set specifications for the pelvis positioning pad proposed 
in the 2010 SNPRM have not been adopted since they are not necessary 
for ensuring that the pad has good repeatability in FMVSS No. 213 
dynamic sled tests. The proposed range of acceptable compression 
resistance in the compression-deflection test and the density of the 
foam have been increased, to provide flexibility in selection of 
material while ensuring performance that is repeatable and 
reproducible.
    The pelvis positioning pad in this final rule is describes as: A 
125 x 95 x 20 mm piece of closed cell (Type 2 according to ASTM D-1056-
07) foam or rubber with compression resistance between 9 to 17 pounds 
per square inch (psi) in a compression-deflection test specified in 
ASTM D-1056-07 and a density of 7 to 12.5 lb/ft\3\. This final rule 
incorporates by reference ASTM D-1056-07 into FMVSS No. 213.
Lap Shield
    The UMTRI positioning procedure uses a lap shield to prevent the 
lap belt from getting caught between the pelvis and thigh of the dummy. 
We have decided to use a lap shield for the reasons set forth in the 
2010 SNPRM,\37\ but have corrected the figure depicting the form.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \37\ In our tests leading up to SNPRM No. 2, we did not use the 
lap shield. In none of our tests did the lap belt get caught in the 
gap between the pelvis and thigh. However, we have decided that the 
lap shield should be specified for use in the FMVSS No. 213 
compliance test to avoid the possibility that the lap belt could get 
caught in the thigh/pelvis gap. Thus, in the regulatory text adopted 
today, we specify use of the lap shield.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    JPMA supported the UMTRI procedure and use of the lap shield but 
noted that the hip width of the HIII-10C is two inches wider than the 
HIII-6C dummy. The commenter asked whether the 2010 SNPRM intended to 
specify the use of the same lap shield for both dummies.
    Agency Response: UMTRI has conducted sled tests with the HIII-6C 
and the HIII-10C dummies using the same lap shield for both dummies, 
and the results indicate that the same size lap shield is sufficient 
for both ATDs.\38\ However, NHTSA has examined the lap shield that was 
depicted in proposed Figure 13 of the SNPRM and found that the 
dimensions of the lap shield drawing were incorrect, as they were 
significantly larger than the lap shield that UMTRI has used with the 
dummies. We have revised the lap shield drawing for this final rule 
with the correct dimensions.\39\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \38\ The lap shield adheres to the dummy with double-sided tape, 
and because of this and its flexibility, conforms to the shape of 
the dummy's pelvis and thighs. Thus, only one lap shield is needed.
    \39\ See ex parte memorandum in Docket No. NHTSA-2010-0158.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Lap Belt Tension
    Concerning the specification for lap belt tension, the agency is 
not adopting the proposed sections S10.2.3 (d)(1) through (7) from the 
2010 SNPRM, and is instead adopting an instruction to simply attach the 
vehicle belts and tighten them as specified in S6.1.2. We did not adopt 
the proposed instructions because they were specific to continuous 
belts. FMVSS No. 213 currently does not specify the use of continuous 
belts and thus the SNPRM's provisions for a continuous belt system were 
not relevant to the FMVSS No. 213 belt system.
Applying the Procedure to Other ATDs
    In the 2010 SNPRM, the agency requested comment on whether the 
UMTRI procedure should be extended to dummies other than the HIII-10C 
and the HIII-6C dummies in belt-positioning seats. The current FMVSS 
No. 213 procedure and the UMTRI procedure are very similar, except that 
the UMTRI procedure includes additional steps controlling the 
positioning of the CRS on the standard seat assembly, the positioning 
of the dummy, and positioning of the seat belts.
    In its comment, JPMA stated that since its members have no testing 
experience using the UMTRI procedure with other dummies, the JPMA does 
not support using this procedure at this time with other dummies.
    NHTSA has decided not to apply the UMTRI procedure to ATDs other 
than the HIII-6C and the HIII-10C dummies. We are not aware of a need 
to apply the UMTRI procedure to the other ATDs. Some CRSs were tested 
with the HIII-3C dummy. In those tests, the ATD was positioned on the 
CRS using the current FMVSS No. 213 procedure. Changing the positioning 
procedure for the HIII-3C dummy to use the UMTRI procedure would 
require developing and evaluating a different size lap shield and 
pelvis positioning pad, endeavors for which agency time and resources 
are not available, and for which we do not see a need at this time.

e. LATCH Issues

    The agency proposed in the 2010 SNPRM that a harness-equipped CRS 
tested with the HIII-10C dummy would be attached to the standard seat 
assembly with the seat belt system and would not be tested with the 
lower anchorages of the LATCH system. The agency proposed this 
restriction based on a comment \40\ from the Alliance to the 2008 SNPRM 
requesting the amendment. The Alliance explained:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \40\ Docket No. NHTSA-2007-0048-0008, page 7.

    When NHTSA adopted FMVSS No. 225, ``Child Restraint Anchorage 
Systems,'' and made corresponding changes to FMVSS No. 213 to 
require CRSs to comply with that standard when tested utilizing 
Lower Anchorage and Tethers for CHildren (LATCH) anchorages, the 
LATCH systems in vehicles were intended for use by children up to 48 
pounds. No vehicle manufacturer recommends the use of LATCH anchors 
with children that even approach the weight of the 10-year-old 
dummy. And although some CRS manufacturers are offering harness-
equipped CRSs that are recommended for use by children that weigh up 
to 65 pounds, it is the Alliance's understanding that they 
explicitly instruct parents and caregivers to use the vehicle belts 
rather than the LATCH anchorages when using such a CRS with a child 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
that weighs more than 50 pounds.

    In the 2010 SNPRM, NHTSA also explained our view that, if NHTSA 
would not test a CRS with LATCH using the HIII-10C even though the CRS 
is recommended for use by children weighing over 29.5 kg (65 lb), then 
we believed that the CRS should bear a label informing the consumer not 
to attach the CRS with LATCH when restraining a child weighing more 
than 65 lb. The consumer would be instructed to use the seat belt 
system instead of LATCH. NHTSA proposed the labeling requirement to 
reduce the likelihood that a consumer would use the CRS with LATCH 
attachments when restraining heavier children and risk possible failure 
of the interface or the anchor system.\41\
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    \41\ There is also disparate messaging to consumers that needs 
to be addressed. Some CRS manufacturers of harness-equipped CRSs 
that are recommended for children weighing up to 65 lb, explicitly 
instruct the consumer to use the vehicle seat belt rather than the 
LATCH lower anchorages with a child that weighs more than 
approximately 50 lb. However, some CRS manufacturers do not prohibit 
the use of LATCH for CRS installation even when used by children 
weighing 65-80 lb. Vehicle manufacturers are largely silent about 
the recommended child weight limit for LATCH installation. Some 
vehicle models specify in the owner's manual a child weight limit of 
40 to 48 lb for LATCH installation, while a few models specify a 
higher weight limit for LATCH installation of up to 50 lb child 
weight and permit tether anchor use for children weighing up to 60 
lb. These differing weight limits have created confusion among 
consumers.

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[[Page 11639]]

Comments
    The proposal that the agency will not assess the CRS using LATCH 
when conducting compliance tests of CRSs with the 10-year-old dummy was 
generally supported by the commenters. In opposition was Sunshine Kids 
(SSK), which believed that the HIII-10C should be used to test the 
LATCH system of a CRS that has a stated capacity above 65 lb. SSK 
believed that consumers will use the LATCH system even if there is a 
label with a stated weight limit. SSK supported a certain dynamic 
approach that would enable CRS manufacturers to produce harness-
equipped CRS for children up to 80 lb. JPMA also expressed a preference 
to use, in the future, a ``dynamic test to define the labeling required 
on the CRS, if any, and define the testing for installation with LATCH 
based on the LATCH use limit specified on the CRS.'' JPMA indicated 
that this approach is under development by an inter-industry working 
group.
    There was widespread support for a label providing a weight limit 
as a means of providing needed information to the consumer. Many urged 
changes to the content of the labeling.\42\ Safe Ride News urged NHTSA 
to consider that it must be the CRS manufacturer, not the vehicle 
manufacturer, that determines the LATCH limit for each car seat model, 
and CRS manufacturers should be required to determine such limits for 
all models. The Alliance and the Association of Global Automakers 
(Global Automakers) (formerly known as the Association of International 
Automobile Manufacturers (AIAM)) jointly urged the agency to adopt a 
requirement that CRS labels provide a maximum weight recommendation 
that is specific to each restraint model, based on the difference 
between 65 lb and the actual weight of the restraint.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \42\ These will be discussed below. Main points involved: the 
reference to the weight of the child alone versus the combined 
weight of child and CRS; distinguishing lower anchorage use from 
upper tether anchorage use; and allowing provision for securing 
booster seats so they do not become projectiles in a crash.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Several consumer advocates believed that a label was needed also to 
address the different messages consumers receive from CRS and vehicle 
manufacturers on LATCH usage. There is consumer uncertainty about the 
strength of the LATCH anchors to withstand the forces of a CRS 
restraining an older child (i.e., how long before LATCH should no 
longer be used to attach the CRS and when the belts should be used 
instead). CU stated: ``whether or not the research demonstrates the 
ability of the LATCH anchors to withstand child masses greater than 65 
pounds, a clear message needs to be provided to consumers as to what 
such limits are.''
    The Alliance and many others were concerned that the proposed 
wording that referred to a 65-lb child weight limit did not adequately 
account for the weight of the CRS, and thus may be providing 
misinformation. The Alliance indicated that the 2010 SNPRM's discussion 
of the reasons for the 65-lb child weight limit did not recount 
accurately enough the agency's analysis in the FMVSS No. 225 rulemaking 
that supported the 15,000 N LATCH anchorage load requirement (response 
to petitions for reconsideration, June 27, 2003, 68 FR 38208, 38218). 
The commenter believed that, because both the terms ``child'' and 
``child + CRS'' were used in the FMVSS No. 225 analyses, the 2010 
SNPRM's reference to ``the child's weight of 65 lb'' alone was 
inaccurate since the LATCH load requirements were developed using a 
combined maximum ``child + CRS'' weight of 65 lb. The Alliance believed 
the label should refer to the combined weight.
    The Alliance stated that referring to the combined weight would 
also accord with vehicle manufacturer recommendations to discontinue 
the use of LATCH when the child is in the 48-lb range. That is, it is 
assumed that the weight of the CRS is about 15 lb, so a child in the 
48-lb range, plus the typical weight of the CRS (15 lb), leads to a 
combined weight of approximately 65 lb.
    Child restraint manufacturers differed in their response to the 
proposal. JPMA expressed a preference for an approach that uses a 
dynamic test to define the labeling required on CRS, but recognized 
that such an approach is not developed at this time. Commenting on the 
labeling proposal, the commenter recommended limiting the use of the 
LATCH system to children weighing 48 lb or less, until the joint 
industry study is completed. JPMA explained that the 48-lb 
recommendation was based on a total mass of 65 lb attached to the LATCH 
anchorages, which includes the mass of the CRS. The commenter stated 
that the recommendation is supported by the agency's calculations for 
the FMVSS No. 225 load requirements, and is consistent with most LATCH 
use limits defined by vehicle manufacturers.
    Evenflo referred to work underway by vehicle and CRS manufacturers 
seeking to determine the maximum force exerted on the lower anchors by 
an occupied CRS under severe crash conditions. According to the 
commenter, the intent is that CRSs ``exceeding this force threshold in 
laboratory testing be labeled accordingly so to alert caregivers to 
discontinue using the lower anchor system once the child reaches a 
specified mass, which will vary based on the specific design of the 
child restraint system.'' Evenflo stated that this would allow more 
flexibility for CRS manufacturers to offer CRSs with internal harnesses 
that can be used to higher weight limits when installed with the lower 
anchors. Evenflo acknowledged that ``[i]n the interim, a more 
conservative threshold based on occupant mass can be used,'' which 
NHTSA understands to refer to the proposed label. Evenflo suggested 
that the label(s) should include the alert symbol and warning caption 
on a contrasting background and should be placed at or near the 
location where the lower anchor system attaches to or enters the child 
restraint to better draw attention to it.
    As noted above, Sunshine Kids (SSK) supported an alternative 
approach rather than the proposed approach. It suggested that, 
``[u]sing the dynamic capacity for lower anchors and top tether is a 
more practical approach to determine the LATCH capacity of child 
restraints.'' SSK stated that this approach would require all child 
restraints to be tested to a structural validation test that would 
measure the lower anchor load using the largest stated occupant 
capacity of the CRS for the dummy in the test. SSK provided a research 
paper in which 12 kN was assumed as a safe dynamic load limit for the 
LATCH lower anchors in NCAP-type crash testing, when using a size-
appropriate dummy for a particular CRS model. SSK stated: ``[L]oad 
limitation is designed into the structural assembly of the Radian 
[produced by SSK], effectively limiting the Lower Anchor loads to 12 KN 
for any ATD configuration under 35 mph 47 G sled pulse loads.'' The 
commenter believed that by requiring all CRSs to be tested under what 
the commenter believed to be a worst case loading, the consumer would 
be assured that the LATCH system and the CRS are designed around a 
maximum dynamic load that, the commenter believed, will not exceed the 
structural limits of the vehicle. SSK believed that this approach will 
allow the most freedom to design restraints that can fit large occupant 
weights and can work within the proposed dynamic limit of 12 kN for 
each lower anchor attachment in the vehicle.

[[Page 11640]]

    Britax requested the proposed warning language be revised to permit 
the use of LATCH anchors for belt-positioning seats equipped with 
LATCH. Britax stated that some CRS manufacturers recommend the use of 
LATCH with the boosters solely to secure the booster, to ensure that if 
unoccupied, the booster will not become a flying projectile (and injure 
other vehicle occupants) in a vehicle crash. (This suggestion was 
echoed by JPMA and the Alliance.) Britax added that the occupant of the 
belt-positioning seat is secured by the vehicle seat belts and those 
vehicle seat belts would bear the occupant load in a motor vehicle 
crash, so the child occupant in the booster seat does not load the 
LATCH anchors.
    SafetyBeltSafe asked that the label permit the top tether anchorage 
to be used to a higher weight of child occupant than the lower LATCH 
anchorages. The commenter stated that vehicle manufacturers often state 
or imply that 40 lb is the top weight that is acceptable for tether 
anchor use, but that Transport Canada testing has tested heavy dummies 
in seats using tether anchors and lower anchors with no failures. In 
its comment, Safe Ride News pointed out that while lower anchors have a 
functional alternative in the form of seat belts, the tether system 
does not usually have an alternative method. Safe Ride News asked NHTSA 
to be mindful of extending the option of tether use whenever possible, 
since ``adding a tether to installation greatly increases the 
performance of a forward-facing car seat.'' The commenter encouraged 
NHTSA ``to be careful in any rulemaking regarding testing and labeling 
to be certain that it does not inadvertently discourage or 
unnecessarily limit tether use.''
    That view about the benefits of using the tether anchor to higher 
weights than the lower LATCH anchorages have been echoed by other 
parties in the context of other CRS programs. On February 25, 2011, 
NHTSA published a document requesting comments on a CRS-to-vehicle fit 
program that the agency was considering establishing under NHTSA's New 
Car Assessment Program (NCAP).\43\ Some commenters to that NCAP 
document suggested that the upper tether should be permitted for use 
with heavier/older children in harnessed CRSs since real world data 
indicates benefits of tether use and no adverse effects when used for 
heavier children. Some indicated that tether use should be permitted 
for children weighing up to 65 lb (child occupant weight alone, not 
combined with CRS).
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    \43\ 76 FR 10637, Docket NHTSA-2010-00062.
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Agency Response
    All relevant issues raised by the commenters on the LATCH issue are 
addressed below.
1. The Label \44\
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    \44\ The following requirements apply only to CRSs equipped with 
an internal harness to restrain the child and with components to 
attach to a LATCH system, and for which the combined weight of the 
CRS and the maximum recommended child weight for use with the 
internal harness exceeds 65 lb.
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    The agency believes that a label on the CRS with a clear and 
consistent message to consumers regarding lower LATCH anchorage use is 
an appropriate means of reducing the likelihood that CRSs are attached 
to the vehicle seat with lower LATCH anchorages when occupied by 
children too heavy for the lower LATCH anchors. This would help prevent 
lower LATCH anchor loads from exceeding their required strength level 
specified in FMVSS No. 225. Such consistent labeling will reduce 
confusion regarding LATCH use amongst parents and caregivers and result 
in reduced misuse.
2. Combined Weight
    While the 2010 SNPRM proposed the label to have a 65-lb child 
weight limit, the agency agrees with the Alliance and others that the 
65-lb weight limit should be the combined weight of the child and the 
weight of the CRS. In calculating the appropriate strength requirements 
of FMVSS No. 225, NHTSA based its calculations on an assumption that a 
combined weight of 65 lb (from the CRS + child) would be attached to 
the LATCH anchors (68 FR at 38218). This matter is of more significance 
today than before because CRSs have substantially increased in mass 
since the LATCH rulemaking, and children are riding in harnessed CRSs 
longer. At the time of the LATCH rulemaking, CRSs weighed on average 
about 15 lb and children were in harnessed CRSs until about age 4. Now, 
CRSs are heavier, with some weighing up to 30 lb, and there are 
harnessed CRSs marketed for children who weigh up to 80 lb.
3. Account for Weight of CRS
    Similar to the Alliance, JPMA recommended that the label should 
state a weight limit for the child of 48 lb, rather than a child weight 
of 65 lb, to be more consistent with the analysis performed by the 
agency in setting the FMVSS No. 225 strength requirements. We concur 
with the commenter's view that the NPRM's reference to the child weight 
of 65 lb was not correct, the NPRM reference should have been to the 
combined weight of the CRS and the child. We note, though, that while 
having all CRSs refer to a single child weight of 48 lb has simplicity, 
there are some safety concerns with such an approach. Currently, there 
are some very heavy CRSs being produced, some weighing nearly 30 lb. If 
those very heavy CRSs had a label indicating that they could be used 
with LATCH with children up to 48 lb, the LATCH anchors could be 
overloaded in a crash (30 lb CRS+48 lb child).
    Safe Ride News also raised concerns about a requirement that 
required all CRSs to reference a singular child weight. The commenter 
thought it would be confusing if there were, say, a manufacturer of a 
``high-weight harness seat'' that intended its seat to only be used 
with LATCH with children up to 50 lb. If NHTSA required the CRS to be 
labeled with a warning against use with LATCH when the child reaches 65 
lb, the consumer could be misled to believe the CRS can be used until 
the child reaches 65 lb. Safe Ride News believed that clear labeling 
regarding upper weight limits for each model is a better solution.
    After considering all the comments on this issue, NHTSA has decided 
to modify the proposed label requirement, to take a more direct 
approach than referencing a single weight to be included on all CRS 
labels. As explained above, we are using combined weight (CRS + child) 
rather than child weight alone. The label will be unique to each CRS 
model equipped with an internal harness, for which the combined weight 
of CRS and the maximum recommended child weight for use with internal 
harness exceeds 65 lb. Such CRSs will have to be labeled with 
information instructing the consumer that the LATCH lower anchorages 
may be used to attach the CRS to the vehicle seat when restraining a 
child weighing x lb or less using the CRS's internal harness. The ``x'' 
value is 65 lb minus the weight of the CRS. The x value indicates the 
maximum weight of the child for which the LATCH lower anchorages can be 
used such that the combined weight (weight of CRS + child) does not 
exceed 65 lb. We believe that this approach is clearer to the consumer, 
because the caregiver is likely to know the weight of the child better 
than the ``combined'' weight of the CRS + child. The clear and direct 
information will reduce the risk that the consumer will keep the child 
attached to the vehicle via the LATCH lower anchorages beyond the 
design parameters of the LATCH system.

[[Page 11641]]

4. Top Tether
    A significant portion of the harm to children resulting from motor 
vehicle crashes could be prevented by the tether. Accident data from 
NHTSA's NASS CDS data files from 1995-2007 indicate that 39 percent of 
AIS 2+ injuries to children 0-12 years of age restrained in rear 
seating positions in frontal crashes were to the head and face, with 60 
percent of these injuries resulting from contact with the seat and back 
support. Sled test data indicates that use of the upper tether reduces 
head excursions of the occupant restrained in the CRS and therefore, 
reduces the likelihood of head impacts against the vehicle 
structure.\45\
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    \45\ Legault, F. Garndner, B., Vincent, A., ``The Effect of Top 
Tether Strap Configurations on Child Restraint Performance,'' 
Society of Automotive Engineers, SAE No. 973304, 1997. In addition, 
the quantifiable safety benefits that NHTSA estimated will accrue 
from the LATCH rulemaking was due to the tether.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Tethers provide much more secure attachment of child restraints 
compared to being attached by the seat belt only or lower LATCH anchors 
only. In particular, they provide more rigid attachment at the top part 
of the child restraint, so that the CRS can ``ride down'' the crash 
while the vehicle is crushing. This considerably reduces excursion of 
the child's head relative to the vehicle interior, so the head is far 
less likely to hit other parts of the vehicle interior--the most likely 
cause of serious injury to a properly restrained child. A study in New 
South Wales, Australia found that top tether use was extremely 
effective in reducing injuries to children in CRSs.\46\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \46\ Paine M., Vertsonis, H., ``Surveys of Child Restraint Use 
in South Wales,'' 2001 ESV Conference, NHTSA, 2001, http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/pdf/nrd-01/esv/esv17/proceed/00237.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    CRSs are required by FMVSS No. 213 to meet a minimum head excursion 
limit (a 32-inch requirement) without use of the tether. CRSs must also 
meet an enhanced head excursion requirement (28-inch) where a tether 
may be used to meet the more stringent requirement. Some child 
passenger safety consumer advocates suggest that the risks associated 
with the tether not holding in a crash are small \47\ and so the use of 
the top tether should not be limited by the weight of the child.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \47\ Comment from Safe Ride News on ``Open Letter to the 
Curriculum Committee: Tethers Need Special Attention in Next 
Update,'' http://saferidenews.com/srndnn/srndnn/CPSTsProfessionals/EditorialsfromSafeRideNews/OpenLettertotheNCPSBCurriculumCommittee/tabid/281/Default.aspx.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Although there are demonstrable benefits associated with a top 
tether, we are not convinced that tether use should be unlimited, i.e. 
that there need not be any weight restriction on use of the tether. Not 
enough is known about the consequences of not having any weight 
restriction on the use of the tether anchorage. Field data do not 
indicate any failure of tether anchors, likely because only few higher-
weight rated harnessed-CRSs are in use by children weighing more than 
50 lb. We believe that more field and research data are needed to 
determine reasonable limits for the combined child + CRS weight, to 
ensure that the tether anchor does not fail in most crash conditions, 
and to explore the consequences that may result from overloading the 
tether anchorage. The agency has initiated a research program to 
address weight limits for LATCH use, and the Alliance, JPMA, and Global 
Automakers also have been researching LATCH use weight limits. The 
agency will be able to better assess weight limits for the top tether 
after the research is complete. For now, the agency is not requiring a 
commensurate label on weight limits for use of the top tether.
4. Testing With the HIII-10C
    We agree with the Alliance and others that the LATCH load 
requirements in FMVSS No. 225 (68 FR 38218) were developed to ensure 
that the vehicle LATCH anchorages would be able to withstand forces 
resulting from a 65 lb mass in a severe crash of a vehicle into a rigid 
barrier (peak CRS acceleration of 48.4 gs). Using the HIII-10C dummy 
(weighing almost 80 lb) to test the CRS using the lower LATCH 
attachments could exceed the assumptions behind the strength 
requirements of FMVSS No. 225. Accordingly, we believe that use of the 
ATD in such tests of the CRS would be unreasonable, since the LATCH 
system as a whole was not designed with such use in mind. Therefore, 
the agency will not attach CRSs using lower LATCH anchors in compliance 
tests when using the HIII-10C dummy. (See newly adopted paragraph S5(f) 
in the regulatory text.) However, as explained earlier, the top tether 
is used for meeting the enhanced head excursion requirements in FMVSS 
No. 213 and the agency will test harness equipped CRSs with and without 
tether attachment when using the HIII-10C dummy.
    In coming to this position, we are mindful to view the LATCH system 
as a whole. It would not make sense to require CRSs to meet a LATCH 
performance requirement if vehicle manufacturers, for good reason, are 
not permitting the CRSs to be installed in their vehicles using LATCH. 
We also must be mindful that developments in CRS technologies must be 
compatible with vehicle technologies, and vice versa, when it comes to 
child passenger safety, since the interaction between CRSs and the 
vehicle in protecting occupants is crucial. (Incompatibilities between 
CRS and vehicle designs were the reasons NHTSA commenced the LATCH 
rulemaking which resulted in FMVSS No. 225.)
    In response to SSK which wanted us to test CRSs with the HIII-10C 
when attached to LATCH in part due to concerns about consumer misuse, 
the label required by this final rule will reduce the likelihood of 
consumers misusing the LATCH lower anchorages to attach harness-
equipped CRSs for which the LATCH system was not designed. This rule 
requires CRSs to provide information about lower LATCH use limits that 
is very specific to each CRS model. Consumers will be provided 
information on lower LATCH use limits that is clearer than ever. This 
clear instruction will facilitate the consumer's understanding--and 
that of any child seat fitting station technicians assisting them--of 
when they should transition from the LATCH system and reattach the CRS 
using the seat belt system.
    Evenflo also expressed concern about misuse, but noted that, to 
date, it was unaware of any real world data to suggest that misuse of 
this type was an issue. The agency did not receive data or comments on 
this issue from any other commenters. The agency believes that the 
label required by the final rule to be on the CRS, which provides a 
clear and consistent message regarding lower LATCH use, improves the 
current situation where no information or inconsistent information is 
typically provided the consumer. The information will help ensure that 
CRSs are not attached using lower LATCH anchors to the vehicle seat 
when occupied by children of weights outside of the design parameters 
of the lower LATCH system.
    As noted above, the agency also has initiated a research program to 
address various issues with LATCH, and will be examining the weight 
limit for LATCH use. NHTSA also is aware of the project of the 
Alliance, the JPMA, and the Global Automakers to determine LATCH use 
limits.\48\ However, an alternative to specify LATCH weight limits 
based on a dynamic assessment, as suggested by JPMA, Sunshine Kids, and 
Evenflo, is not developed at this time and may not be available in the 
foreseeable future. In the absence of a viable dynamic test or other 
approach, the engineering calculations used in the

[[Page 11642]]

FMVSS No. 225 rulemaking, supra, to determine the LATCH load limits are 
appropriate.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \48\ This work has been on-going since mid-2006.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The agency disagrees with the suggestion of JPMA, Evenflo, SSK, and 
Safe Ride News that CRS manufacturers should have the sole 
responsibility of determining the maximum weight limit for LATCH usage 
when this limit exceeds a combined weight of 65 lb. While the agency 
does not want to inhibit innovation, the agency believes that more 
research needs to be conducted in order to allow a higher weight limit 
for lower LATCH anchor use than the anchorage strength requirement in 
FMVSS No. 225 when compatibilities between the CRS and the vehicle are 
at issue.
    Although SSK has stated that it has developed CRSs with load 
limiters that result in reduced lower LATCH anchor loads in sled tests, 
we know that crash pulse, the geometry and location of the vehicle 
anchors, the weight of the child and the CRS, and the unique design of 
the CRS are some of the factors affecting the anchor loads and we do 
not have enough information to conclude that these CRSs will keep 
anchor loads below the anchor strength of the vehicle in all 
configurations and uses in vehicles.\49\ The agency believes that a 
well-considered assessment of these new CRSs would likely entail 
developing new procedures and requirements for this type of CRS. Such a 
change in the standard is out of the scope and timeframe of this 
rulemaking.\50\
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    \49\ The April 11, 2011 joint comment from the Alliance and 
Global Automakers (p. 3) stated that it would support a provision in 
FMVSS No. 213 that would allow CRS manufacturers to certify their 
CRSs to a higher maximum weight rating (child+CRS greater than 65 
lb) in certain circumstances, with the CRS attached using LATCH or 
with LATCH+belts simultaneously. The comment stated ``This 
certification could be based on [an] FMVSS 213-type sled test with 
modifications to the pulse, test buck or other aspects of the FMVSS 
213 test as appropriate for this purpose. In the absence of such 
certification, testing of restraints that are intended to 
accommodate larger children (CRS+child weighing more than 65 pounds) 
should not be tested under FMVSS [No.] 213 using the LATCH system.'' 
This comment indicates that determining that a CRS is indeed 
compatible with LATCH in a range of vehicles, crash situations, and 
CRS use conditions involves a complex evaluation of the factors we 
mentioned and perhaps more.
    \50\ The risk of allowing such CRSs at this time when not enough 
is known about the compatibility factors is the increased risk of 
anchorage failure in a crash, which can be catastrophic to the child 
occupant. The risk of catastrophic failure can be avoided by having 
CRSs for heavier children labeled with an instruction to the 
consumer to use the vehicle seat belt system when the child attains 
a certain weight. Seat belts are a readily available, safe 
alternative for the consumer to use.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The agency will continue to address various outstanding issues with 
LATCH in a research program we initiated in 2011. The agency will also 
examine closely the results from the ongoing research efforts by the 
industry working group to decide LATCH issues in the future, as 
appropriate.\51\
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    \51\ The April 11, 2011 joint comment from the Alliance and 
Global Automakers presented certain scenarios (pp. 2-3) and asked 
NHTSA to address them in developing consumer labeling and FMVSS No. 
213 testing protocols. For the most part, these comments are beyond 
the scope of this rulemaking.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Under this final rule, harness-equipped CRSs, for which the 
combined weight of the CRS and the maximum recommended child weight for 
internal harness use exceeds 65 lb, will not be attached to the 
standard seat assembly using lower LATCH anchors when tested with a 
dummy whose weight is greater than the manufacturer-recommended child 
weight limit for LATCH use. (See S5(f) of the regulatory text.) For 
example, a harness-equipped CRS weighing 15 lb and recommended for 
children weighing up to 65 lb, will be attached to the standard seat 
with a lap belt when tested with the weighted 6-year old dummy since 
the ATD weighs 65 lb. The weight of the ATD will be greater than the 
manufacturer-recommended child weight for LATCH use (under this final 
rule, the label will indicate that the CRS may be used with LATCH lower 
anchorages up to a child weight of 50 lb (65 lb - 15 lb = 50 lb). On 
the other hand, when tested with the HIII-6C dummy (which weighs 48 
lb), the CRS will be tested separately with the lap belt attachment and 
with the LATCH attachment.
6. Boosters
    In response to Britax and the JPMA, we agree that a child in a 
belt-positioning booster seat is restrained by the vehicle seat belt 
and that the LATCH lower anchors will not be excessively loaded if the 
booster happens to have LATCH attachments. The agency is not aware of 
any information indicating the use of belt-positioning seats with LATCH 
is a risk. Therefore, we are excluding belt-positioning seats from the 
LATCH maximum recommended weight label.
7. Other
    1. In response to Evenflo's suggestion to include an alert symbol 
and warning caption on a contrasting background on the label and to 
place the label at or near the location where the lower anchor system 
attaches to or enters the child restraint, this final rule specifies 
standardized language that should appear on the label and instruction 
manual of each CRS. The inclusion of the new language on the label will 
modify the current section S5.5.2(g)(1)(ii) regarding LATCH usage. This 
label is specified to have a capitalized statement ``WARNING! DEATH or 
SERIOUS INJURY can occur'' according to S5.5.2(g)(1) and a yellow 
heading area with the word ``warning'' and the alert symbol in black 
according to S5.5.2(k)(3)(1). With regard to location, FMVSS No. 213 
already specifies the recommended locations for labels which are meant 
to be visible to the user.
    2. In response to a comment from Advocates, we disagree with the 
suggestion to state on the label that LATCH is the preferred method of 
CRS attachment for children. LATCH was promulgated to simplify CRS 
installation and to reduce the continued high incidence of misuse and 
incorrect installation of child safety seats. However, not all vehicles 
in the current fleet are equipped with LATCH and not all seating 
positions in a vehicle are equipped with full LATCH systems. Therefore, 
seat belts are still used by caregivers to install CRSs in some seating 
positions. We believe that properly-installed CRSs provide high levels 
of safety whether installed using LATCH or the vehicle seat belts, and 
making the suggested statement on the label is unsupported.

f. Lead Time

    As proposed in the 2005 SNPRM, this final rule is effective two 
years after the date of publication of this final rule, meaning that 
CRSs manufactured on or after that 2-year date are required to meet the 
requirements of this final rule. Optional early compliance with the 
requirements is permitted. We believe there is good cause for providing 
two as opposed to one-year for the effective date. CRS manufacturers 
will have to assess their products' conformance to FMVSS No. 213 when 
tested with the new ATD, and will have to gear up to meet new labeling 
and other requirements as well.
    In its comment on the 2005 NPRM, Graco had referred to the spikes 
observed in the dummy's HIC measurements and suggested that three years 
of lead time should be provided to allow manufacturers time to gain 
experience with the HIII-10C dummy, and to make any necessary product 
design changes. Since this final rule is not adopting the HIC 
requirement, we believe Graco's concerns about needing time to work 
with HIC are addressed.
    Dorel commented in 2005 expressing concerns about an unavailability 
of the HIII-10C. We believe many manufacturers are already testing with 
the HIII-10C dummy and that the final

[[Page 11643]]

version of the HIII-10C dummy is very similar to that currently 
available. This issue is also discussed in the accompanying 49 CFR part 
572 final rule.
    Graco was concerned about having additional lead time to get 
adjusted to testing with the HIII-6C. We believe that needing more time 
to adjust to this ATD is no longer an issue as the agency has permitted 
manufacturers the choice of NHTSA testing their child restraints with 
either the H2-6C dummy or the HIII-6C dummy until further notice.

g. Mass Limit

    The NPRM requested comment on eliminating the 4.4 kg mass limit for 
belt-positioning boosters in S5.4.3.2, Direct restraint, of FMVSS No. 
213. That section states: ``Except for a child restraint system whose 
mass is less than 4.4 kg, * * * each Type I and lap portion of a Type 
II vehicle belt that is used to attach the system to the vehicle shall, 
when tested in accordance with S6.1, impose no loads on the child that 
result from the mass of the system[.]'' NHTSA sought the amendment 
because the agency announced in 2003 that it would not enforce the 
requirement of S5.4.3.2 against belt-positioning seats until further 
notice. (Letter to John Stipancich; April 11, 2003; Docket No. NHTSA 
2003-15005-1.) We believed that it did not make sense to have a 
requirement in the standard that the agency was not going to enforce. 
However, in place of the 4.4 kg mass limit, NHTSA was considering 
whether to propose a chest deflection limit. The agency's concern was 
about belt-positioning seats over-compressing the child's chest between 
a bulky booster seat back and the shoulder belt in a crash.
    In the NPRM, NHTSA presented data from VRTC tests of the HIII-10C 
\52\ with belt-positioning seats of different mass. The VRTC tests 
explored whether more massive booster seats caused excessive belt 
forces. Data from the tests, while limited, did not demonstrate a 
correlation between seat mass and belt force.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \52\ ``Hybrid III 10-Year-Old Dummy (HIII-10C) Injury Criteria 
Development,'' supra.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    VRTC also examined the relationship between seat mass and the 
measured chest deflection of an HIII-10C test dummy. The data showed 
that the heaviest booster tested in the agency's limited test series 
resulted in the highest measured chest deflection with the HIII-10C 
test dummy. However, the second heaviest booster resulted in the lowest 
measured chest deflection. NHTSA sought comments on a chest deflection 
limit.
Comments
    Britax and JPMA concurred with eliminating the 4.4 kg mass limit. 
On the other hand, Graco stated that there are insufficient injury data 
at this time that would support the elimination of the 4.4 kg mass 
limit for belt-positioning seats. No commenter provided data to augment 
the VRTC test data.
    Britax, Evenflo, and Graco stated that the chest deflection 
criterion needed further study before being considered for adoption as 
a performance criterion in FMVSS No. 213. Britax stated that it was 
important to adopt chest deflection performance criteria only after the 
biomechanics community has agreed on reasonable limits. Evenflo stated 
that, to propose the inclusion of a chest deflection requirement in 
FMVSS No. 213, the interaction between the booster seat mass and dummy 
response should be better understood.
Agency Response
    The agency has decided to amend S5.4.3.2 to exclude belt-
positioning seats from the requirement, for the reasons provided in the 
NPRM. Since the agency is not enforcing the requirement against belt-
positioning seats, it does not make sense to retain the requirement. 
The requirement is removed from FMVSS No. 213 for those CRSs.
    At this time, we are not proposing a chest deflection limit to 
address the risk that a massive belt-positioning seat could overload a 
child's chest. We have studied the video footage of the VRTC tests of 
the six belt-positioning seats discussed in the 2005 NPRM and believe 
there is a possibility that the design of the belt-positioning seat, 
including mass distribution, flexibility, vehicle seat belt routing and 
geometry, could have more of an influence on the dummy's chest 
deflection than the mass of the belt-positioning seat.
    We observed that, in a frontal impact sled test of a high back 
belt-positioning seat, there is initially little relative motion 
between the dummy and the belt-positioning seat on which it is 
positioned.\53\ As the dummy moves forward and interacts with the lap/
shoulder belt, it begins to decelerate while the belt-positioning seat 
may continue its forward motion (since it is not attached to the sled 
bench seat, its forward motion is only restricted by frictional 
forces). Later in the simulated crash event, the seat back of the belt-
positioning seat may interact with the dummy's back, whose forward 
motion is restricted by the lap/shoulder belt.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \53\ The scenario described here is that when using a 
deceleration sled system. The sled system only simulates forward 
movement as described in this paragraph.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    It is this stage in the event where there may be a potential for 
the seatback of the belt-positioning seat to load the dummy's back and 
thereby result in increased loading of the shoulder belt on the dummy's 
chest. If the seatback of the belt-positioning seat loads the dummy 
during the time of maximum upper torso excursion when the chest 
deflection is highest, this seatback interaction with the dummy may 
result in elevated dummy chest deflection.
    We observed through our testing, however, that the different belt-
positioning seats loaded the ATD differently. The Britax Bodyguard 
(Test 9498), which has a mass of 5.98 kg, resulted in the 
lowest chest deflection of the six belt-positioning seat models tested. 
The video showed that the back of the belt-positioning seat moved 
together with the dummy and bent forward following the dummy's back and 
head movement. This particular design showed a lot of flexibility, and 
due to the low chest deflection measured by the ATD, we infer that the 
belt-positioning seatback did not contribute or contributed minimally 
to the loading of the dummy's chest by the belts.
    The Century Next Step (4.28 kg) (Test 9505), Cosco Voyager 
(3.09 kg) (Test 9493) and Graco Grand Cargo (3.44 kg) (Test 
9496) showed that at the time of maximum forward excursion, 
which coincided with the time of peak belt loading, the belt-
positioning seatback was not in contact with the dummy's back. We can 
deduce that the belt-positioning seatback was not contributing to the 
loading of the chest at the time of maximum belt loading.
    On the other hand, the kinematics of the Century Breverra (4.25 kg) 
(Test 9495) and Recaro Young Start (8.87 kg) (Test 
9497) were less conclusive as the back of the belt-positioning 
seats appeared to be in contact with the dummy's back at the time of 
maximum forward excursion. However, it is not clear from the test data 
if this contact resulted in additional loading to the dummy's chest. 
The relevant test videos are available on NHTSA's Vehicle Crash Test 
Database \54\ and may be accessed by identifying the test numbers 
reported in this section.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \54\ http://wwwnrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/database/aspx/vehdb/querytesttable.aspx.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Our examination leads us to believe that belt-positioning seats can 
be made to reduce the effect of belt loading of the child's chest. The 
agency also believes

[[Page 11644]]

that because the loading of the seatback of the belt-positioning seat 
on the dummy occurs during the rebound phase, after the maximum belt 
loading, it appears that the risk of chest injury due to the mass of a 
seat back are lessened. Accordingly, we are excluding belt-positioning 
seats from S5.4.3.2 altogether.\55\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \55\ S5.4.3.2 of FMVSS No. 213 limits the force that may be 
imposed on a child by a belt resulting from the mass of the CRS. 
While we are not aware of any non belt-positioning CRSs that can 
apply such loads through the belts due to its mass, this requirement 
prevents such future designs. Therefore, the agency believes there 
is a need to retain S5.4.3.2 for non-belt-positioning seats.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We recognize that the agency's test data represent a small sample 
of the variety of belt-positioning seats on the market. We are also 
concerned about future belt-positioning seats and how they might 
increase in mass to accommodate larger children. Accordingly, the 
agency will continue to monitor and collect data on the effect of belt-
positioning seat mass on dummy responses.

h. Miscellaneous Issues

1. Housekeeping
    This final rule amends S10.2.1 of FMVSS No. 213 to add reference to 
the 12-month-old test dummy in the heading of that section and to 
remove reference in the section to the 9-month-old ATD, which is no 
longer used in compliance tests. References to the 9-month-old ATD are 
also removed from other sections of the standard. This final rule also 
removes and reserves S5.2.3.2 and S6.3 (specifying head impact 
protection requirements for infant restraints manufactured before 
August 1, 2005) since those sections are obsolete.
2. Belt Fit
    For several reasons, the agency did not propose belt fit 
requirements in this rulemaking. In the 2005 NPRM, NHTSA considered 
performance requirements for seat belt fit for booster seats or for 
belt guidance devices, but determined that existing data did not 
demonstrate that small differences in belt fit resulting from various 
booster seats translated into associated improvements in the dynamic 
performance of a belt system in a crash (70 FR at 51726). The agency 
added that the point at which belt fit degrades the performance of the 
belts from the point of ``acceptable'' to ``unacceptable'' was not 
determined.\56\ (Id.) NHTSA also determined that previous static belt 
fit studies demonstrated variation in fit could be attributed to the 
interaction between vehicle designs and the CRSs (i.e., some vehicle-
to-booster seat combinations were not as good as others and some 
booster seats made the belts fit the child dummies better in some 
vehicles than in others).\57\ (Id.)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \56\ NHTSA also stated that, although we believe that belts are 
better positioned over bony structure of the body than over soft 
tissue, how much variation from the optimal placement of the belt 
should be permitted by a performance standard for the fit to be 
considered ``passing'' is unknown. 70 FR 51727.
    \57\ Such variability makes challenging the meaningfulness of a 
belt fit assessment that only uses a standard FMVSS No. 213-style 
bench seat. Further, even when using the same booster and the same 
vehicle seat, the belt fitting protocols that we assessed lacked 
sufficient repeatability and reproducibility for regulatory 
purposes.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Later, in the 2010 SNPRM, in the context of discussing the UMTRI 
positioning procedure, we mentioned that we had made observations of 
UMTRI's belt fit criteria when we were working with the HIII-6C and 
HIII-10C dummies. The agency stated that the variance and range in 
repeated measurements, especially for shoulder belt fit, was 
unacceptably high (75 FR at 71656). The results suggested that the 
belt-positioning procedure can be influenced by the operator.
    Several commenters submitted views in response to these 
discussions. In response to the 2005 NPRM, IIHS, PC and Advocates 
expressed support for NHTSA establishing criteria for safety belt fit 
for booster seats. Conversely, JPMA believed that belt fit criteria 
should not be included at this time. In response to the 2010 SNPRM, 
IIHS and UMTRI stated that NHTSA's repeatability and reproducibility 
concerns were associated with differences in the dummy jackets and 
friction issues between the belt and the dummy's chest. They stated 
that the procedure for measuring belt fit has been improved and the 
repeatability and reproducibility issues have been addressed.
    Agency Response: The agency has not proposed belt fit requirements 
for the reasons explained in the previous rulemaking documents. We are 
not proceeding with a belt fit proposal at this time. We will keep an 
open mind to evaluating the merits of static belt fit criteria in the 
future. Among other issues, we will consider for future work whether 
belt fit could or should be measured statically. Data indicate \58\ 
that the HIII-10C submarines like a human child. The dummy appears to 
have potential as an appropriate device for use in assessing seat belt 
syndrome in the event that we develop a sufficiently biofidelic abdomen 
that has a means to measure compression.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \58\ Reed, M., Klinich MA, Ebert-Hamilton, S., Klinich, K., 
Manary, M., Rupp, J., ``Assessing Child Belt Fit, Volume II: Effects 
of Restraint Configuration, Booster Seat Designs, Seating Procedure, 
and Belt Fit on the Dynamic Response of the Hybrid III 10 YO ATD in 
Sled Tests,'' September 2008, UMTRI-2008-49-2.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

3. Shoe Size
    This final rule amends S9.1(f) of FMVSS No. 213 to amend the range 
of shoe sizes specified for the Hybrid III 6-year-old dummy, Hybrid III 
6-year-old weighted dummy, and the Hybrid III 10-year-old dummy.
4. Preemption Language
    The American Association for Justice (AAJ) comments to the 2008 
SNPRM objected to the preamble's discussion of the preemptive effect of 
the rule. NHTSA's June 14, 2010 final rule on FMVSS No. 305, 
``Electric-powered vehicles; electrolyte spillage and electrical shock 
protection,'' has already responded to AAJ's concerns about this issue. 
See, 75 FR 33515, at 33524-33525.

V. Rulemaking Analyses and Notices

Executive Order (E.O.) 12866, E.O. 13563 and DOT Regulatory Policies 
and Procedures

    This rulemaking action has considered the impact of this regulatory 
action under E.O. 12866 and E.O. 13563 and the Department of 
Transportation's (DOT) regulatory policies and procedures. This 
rulemaking action was not reviewed by the Office of Management and 
Budget under E.O. 12866. The rulemaking has also been determined not to 
be significant under DOT's regulatory policies and procedures (44 FR 
11034, February 26, 1979).
    This final rule adopts use of a new test dummy in agency tests of 
child restraints. The benefits cannot be quantified. However, assuring 
that child restraints can meet the FMVSS No. 213 requirements when 
tested with a 10-year-old child test dummy should be beneficial. All 
child restraints tested by the agency with the HIII-10C met the 
performance requirements of this final rule, so costs will be minimal.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Pursuant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., 
as amended by the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act 
(SBREFA) of 1996), whenever an agency is required to publish a notice 
for any proposed or final rule, it must prepare and make available for 
public comment a regulatory flexibility analysis that describes the 
effect of the rule on small entities (i.e., small businesses, small 
organizations, and small governmental

[[Page 11645]]

jurisdictions). The Small Business Administration's regulations at 13 
CFR part 121 define a small business, in part, as a business entity 
``which operates primarily within the United States.'' (13 CFR Sec.  
121.105(a)). No regulatory flexibility analysis is required if the head 
of an agency certifies that the rule will not have a significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The SBREFA 
amended the Regulatory Flexibility Act to require Federal agencies to 
provide a statement of the factual basis for certifying that a rule 
will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of 
small entities.
    NHTSA has considered the effects of this rulemaking action under 
the Regulatory Flexibility Act. I hereby certify that this final rule 
will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of 
small entities.
    NHTSA estimates there to be 20 manufacturers of child restraints, 
eight or ten of which could be small businesses.
    The certification responsibilities of manufacturers are generally 
not affected by this final rule. Manufacturers of child restraints 
currently must certify their products to the dynamic test of Standard 
No. 213. They typically provide the basis for those certifications by 
dynamically testing their products using child test dummies. The effect 
of this final rule on most child restraints will be to subject them to 
testing with a new dummy. All child restraints tested by the agency 
with the HIII-10C met the performance requirements adopted today, so 
costs will be minimal.
    The labels and owner's manual of some child restraints will have to 
be revised to add a sentence on consumer information. The cost of 
revising the labels is minimal.

National Environmental Policy Act

    NHTSA has analyzed this rulemaking action for the purposes of the 
National Environmental Policy Act. The agency has determined that 
implementation of this action would not have any significant impact on 
the quality of the human environment.

Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    NHTSA has examined this final rule pursuant to Executive Order 
13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999) and concluded that no additional 
consultation with States, local governments or their representatives is 
mandated beyond the rulemaking process. The agency has concluded that 
the rulemaking would not have sufficient federalism implications to 
warrant consultation with State and local officials or the preparation 
of a federalism summary impact statement. The final rule would not have 
``substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between 
the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power 
and responsibilities among the various levels of government.''
    NHTSA rules can preempt in two ways. First, the National Traffic 
and Motor Vehicle Safety Act contains an express preemption provision: 
When a motor vehicle safety standard is in effect under this chapter, a 
State or a political subdivision of a State may prescribe or continue 
in effect a standard applicable to the same aspect of performance of a 
motor vehicle or motor vehicle equipment only if the standard is 
identical to the standard prescribed under this chapter. 49 U.S.C. 
30103(b)(1). It is this statutory command by Congress that preempts any 
non-identical State legislative and administrative law addressing the 
same aspect of performance.
    The express preemption provision described above is subject to a 
savings clause under which ``[c]ompliance with a motor vehicle safety 
standard prescribed under this chapter does not exempt a person from 
liability at common law.'' 49 U.S.C. 30103(e). Pursuant to this 
provision, State common law tort causes of action against motor vehicle 
manufacturers that might otherwise be preempted by the express 
preemption provision are generally preserved. However, the Supreme 
Court has recognized the possibility, in some instances, of implied 
preemption of such State common law tort causes of action by virtue of 
NHTSA's rules, even if not expressly preempted. This second way that 
NHTSA rules can preempt is dependent upon there being an actual 
conflict between an FMVSS and the higher standard that would 
effectively be imposed on motor vehicle manufacturers if someone 
obtained a State common law tort judgment against the manufacturer, 
notwithstanding the manufacturer's compliance with the NHTSA standard. 
Because most NHTSA standards established by an FMVSS are minimum 
standards, a State common law tort cause of action that seeks to impose 
a higher standard on motor vehicle manufacturers will generally not be 
preempted. However, if and when such a conflict does exist--for 
example, when the standard at issue is both a minimum and a maximum 
standard--the State common law tort cause of action is impliedly 
preempted. See Geier v. American Honda Motor Co., 529 U.S. 861 (2000).
    Pursuant to Executive Order 13132 and 12988, NHTSA has considered 
whether this rule could or should preempt State common law causes of 
action. The agency's ability to announce its conclusion regarding the 
preemptive effect of one of its rules reduces the likelihood that 
preemption will be an issue in any subsequent tort litigation.
    To this end, the agency has examined the nature (e.g., the language 
and structure of the regulatory text) and objectives of this rule and 
finds that this rule, like many NHTSA rules, prescribes only a minimum 
safety standard. As such, NHTSA does not intend that this rule preempt 
state tort law that would effectively impose a higher standard on motor 
vehicle manufacturers than that established by this rule. Establishment 
of a higher standard by means of State tort law would not conflict with 
the minimum standard announced here. Without any conflict, there could 
not be any implied preemption of a State common law tort cause of 
action.

Executive Order 12988 (Civil Justice Reform)

    With respect to the review of the promulgation of a new regulation, 
section 3(b) of Executive Order 12988, ``Civil Justice Reform'' (61 FR 
4729, February 7, 1996) requires that Executive agencies make every 
reasonable effort to ensure that the regulation: (1) Clearly specifies 
the preemptive effect; (2) clearly specifies the effect on existing 
Federal law or regulation; (3) provides a clear legal standard for 
affected conduct, while promoting simplification and burden reduction; 
(4) clearly specifies the retroactive effect, if any; (5) adequately 
defines key terms; and (6) addresses other important issues affecting 
clarity and general draftsmanship under any guidelines issued by the 
Attorney General. This document is consistent with that requirement.
    Pursuant to this Order, NHTSA notes as follows. The preemptive 
effect of this rule is discussed above. NHTSA notes further that there 
is no requirement that individuals submit a petition for 
reconsideration or pursue other administrative proceeding before they 
may file suit in court.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, a person is not required 
to respond to a collection of information by a Federal agency unless 
the collection displays a valid OMB control number. Before seeking OMB 
approval, Federal agencies must provide a 60-day public comment period 
and otherwise consult with members of the public and

[[Page 11646]]

affected agencies concerning each collection of information 
requirement. NHTSA believes the labeling requirement for the LATCH 
anchorages will result in a collection of information burden on child 
restraint system manufacturers. We are providing a 60-day comment 
period on reporting burdens and other matters associated with the 
labeling requirements.
    Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, before an agency submits 
a proposed collection of information to OMB for approval, it must first 
publish a document in the Federal Register providing a 60-day comment 
period and otherwise consult with members of the public and affected 
agencies concerning each proposed collection of information. The OMB 
has promulgated regulations describing what must be included in such a 
document. Under OMB's regulation (at 5 CFR 1320.8(d)), an agency must 
ask for public comment on the following:
    Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the 
proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether 
the information will have practical utility;
    The accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed 
collection of information, including the validity of the methodology 
and assumptions used;
    How to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information 
to be collected;
    How to minimize the burden of the collection of information on 
those who are to respond, including the use of appropriate automated, 
electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or 
other forms of information technology, e.g. permitting electronic 
submission of responses.
    In compliance with these requirements, NHTSA asks for public 
comments on the following collection of information:
    Title: ``Consolidated Child Restraint System Registration, Labeling 
and Defect Notifications.'' OMB Control Number: 2127-0576.
    Requested Expiration Date of Approval: Three years from the 
approval date.
    Type of Request: Label revision of a currently approved collection.
    Affected Public: Business, Individuals and Households.
    Summary of the Collection of Information: This rulemaking adds a 
sentence to the printed instructions and labeling of certain child 
restraint systems (those that have internal harnesses, and that are 
recommended for older children). Currently, child restraint 
manufacturers are required to provide printed instructions with step-
by-step information on how the restraint is to be used. Without proper 
use, the effectiveness of these systems is greatly diminished. Each 
child restraint system must also have a permanent label.\59\ A 
permanently attached label gives ``quicklook'' information on whether 
the restraint meets the safety requirements, recommended installation 
and use, and warnings against misuse. The requested revision is to add 
a sentence to the existing instructions brochure and labeling that will 
inform the consumer that the lower anchors of a LATCH system may be 
used up to a combined weight of child and harnessed-child restraint of 
65 lb. The purpose of this label is to reduce consumer confusion about 
using LATCH, and to assure that the lower anchors will be able to 
withstand the forces generated by the child and CRS in virtually all 
crashes.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \59\ FMVSS No. 213 also requires child restraint manufacturers 
to provide owner-registration cards and to keep records relating to 
owner registration information, so that owners can be notified about 
noncompliance or defect recall campaigns. These owner registration 
requirements are not affected by this rulemaking.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Under this rule, child restraint systems equipped with internal 
harnesses to restrain the child and with components to attach to a 
child restraint anchorage system and for which the combined weight of 
the child restraint system and the maximum recommended child weight for 
use with internal harnesses exceeds 65 pounds, will be required to be 
labeled with the following statement: ``Do not use the lower anchors of 
the child restraint anchorage system (LATCH system) to attach this 
child restraint when restraining a child weighing more than --*-- 
[where * is the recommended weight value in English and metric units 
such that the sum of the recommended weight value and the weight of the 
child restraint system does not exceed 65 pounds (29.5 kg)] with the 
internal harnesses of the child restraint.''
    NHTSA anticipates a change to the hour burden or costs associated 
with the revised child restraint labels and written instructions. Child 
restraint manufacturers produce, on average, a total of approximately 
4,500,000 child restraints per year. The label would apply to 
approximately 50 percent of the total annual production (2,250,000 
units). The hour burden associated with the revised label consist of 
the child restraint manufacturer: (1) Determining the maximum allowable 
child weight when using the lower LATCH anchor attachments as a means 
of installation by subtracting the weight of the child restraint from 
65 pounds and (2) adding this information on an existing label and 
instruction manual. We estimate 2 seconds of additional burden per 
child restraint for the determination of the maximum allowable weight 
and the addition of the information on the existing label and 
instruction manual (2 sec x 2,250,000 units = 4,500,000 seconds = 1,250 
hours).
Estimated Additional Annual Burden: 1,250 Hours
    Comments are invited on: Whether the proposed collection of 
information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of 
the Department, including whether the information will have practical 
utility; the accuracy of the Department's estimate of the burden of the 
proposed information collection; ways to enhance the quality, utility 
and clarity of the information to be collected; and ways to minimize 
the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including 
the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of 
information technology.
    You may submit comments (identified by the DOT Docket ID Number 
above) by any of the following methods: Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go 
to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for 
submitting comments. Mail: Docket Management Facility: U.S. Department 
of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building Ground 
Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590-0001. Hand Delivery or 
Courier: West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey 
Avenue SE., Washington, DC, 20590-0001 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET, 
Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Fax: 202-493-2251. 
Regardless of how you submit your comments, you should mention the 
docket number of this document. You may call the Docket at (202) 366-
9324.
    Note that all comments received will be posted without change to 
http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information 
provided. Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all comments 
received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual 
submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf 
of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT's 
complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on 
April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477-78).

National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act

    Section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement 
Act of 1995 (NTTAA), Public Law 104-113, section 12(d) (15 U.S.C. 272)

[[Page 11647]]

directs NHTSA to use voluntary consensus standards in its regulatory 
activities unless doing so would be inconsistent with applicable law or 
otherwise impractical. Voluntary consensus standards are technical 
standards (e.g., materials specifications, test methods, sampling 
procedures, and business practices) that are developed or adopted by 
voluntary consensus standards bodies, such as the Society of Automotive 
Engineers (SAE). The NTTAA directs the agency to provide Congress, 
through the OMB, explanations when we decide not to use available and 
applicable voluntary consensus standards.
    After carefully reviewing the available information, NHTSA has 
determined that there are no voluntary consensus standards relevant to 
this rulemaking, except this rule incorporates by reference an American 
Society for Testing and Materials standard for testing foam materials.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    Section 202 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA) 
requires Federal agencies to prepare a written assessment of the costs, 
benefits, and other effects of proposed or final rules that include a 
Federal mandate likely to result in the expenditure by State, local or 
tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of more 
than $100 million in any one year (adjusted for inflation with base 
year of 1995). This final rule would not result in the expenditure by 
State, local, or tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the 
private sector of more than $100 million annually.

Executive Order 13045

    Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997) applies to any 
rule that: (1) is determined to be ``economically significant'' as 
defined under E.O. 12866, and (2) concerns an environmental, health, or 
safety risk that NHTSA has reason to believe may have a 
disproportionate effect on children. This rulemaking is not subject to 
the Executive Order because it is not economically significant as 
defined in E.O. 12866.

Executive Order 13211

    Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 18, 2001) applies to any 
rulemaking that: (1) is determined to be economically significant as 
defined under E.O. 12866, and is likely to have a significantly adverse 
effect on the supply of, distribution of, or use of energy; or (2) that 
is designated by the Administrator of the Office of Information and 
Regulatory Affairs as a significant energy action. This rulemaking is 
not subject to E.O. 13211.

Plain Language

    The Plain Language Writing Act of 2010 (Pub. L. 111-274) and 
Executive Order 12866 require each agency to write all rules in plain 
language. Application of the principles of plain language includes 
consideration of the following questions:

--Have we organized the material to suit the public's needs?
--Are the requirements in the rule clearly stated?
--Does the rule contain technical language or jargon that is not clear?
--Would a different format (grouping and order of sections, use of 
headings, paragraphing) make the rule easier to understand?
--Would more (but shorter) sections be better?
--Could we improve clarity by adding tables, lists, or diagrams?
--What else could we do to make this rulemaking easier to understand?

    If you have any responses to these questions, please send them to 
NHTSA at the ADDRESSES section in the heading of this final rule.

Regulation Identifier Number (RIN)

    The Department of Transportation assigns a regulation identifier 
number (RIN) to each regulatory action listed in the Unified Agenda of 
Federal Regulations. The Regulatory Information Service Center 
publishes the Unified Agenda in April and October of each year. You may 
use the RIN contained in the heading at the beginning of this document 
to find this action in the Unified Agenda. This rulemaking originally 
had the RIN 2127-AJ44. This final rule has a new RIN because a 
September 9, 2011 final rule on one of the issues of the rulemaking was 
considered to have completed action on RIN 2127-AJ44.

Privacy Act

    Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all material 
received into any of our dockets, including petitions for 
reconsideration of this rule (a copy of which will be placed in the 
docket), by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or 
signing the comment, if submitted on behalf of an association, 
business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT's complete Privacy Act 
Statement in the Federal Register published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 
19477 at 19478).

List of Subjects in 49 CFR Part 571

    Incorporation by reference, Labeling, Motor vehicle safety, 
Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Tires.

    In consideration of the foregoing, NHTSA amends 49 CFR part 571 as 
follows:

PART 571--FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARDS

0
1. The authority for part 571 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 322, 30111, 30115, 30117 and 30166; 
delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.50.


0
2. Section 571.5 is amended by redesignating paragraphs (d)(16) through 
(d)(37) as paragraphs (d)(17) through (d)(38) and adding new paragraph 
(d)(16), to read as follows:


Sec.  571.5  Matter incorporated by reference.

* * * * *
    (d) * * *
    (16) ASTM D1056-07, ``Standard Specification for Flexible Cellular 
Materials--Sponge or Expanded Rubber,'' approved March 1, 2007, into 
Sec.  571.213.
* * * * *


0
3. Section 571.213 is amended by:
0
a. Revising the definition of ``child restraint system'' in S4;
0
b. Adding S5(e) and (f);
0
c. Revising the introductory text of S5.2.1.2;
0
d. Removing and reserving S5.2.3;
0
e. Revising the introductory text of S5.4.3.2;
0
f. Revising S5.5.2(g)(1)(ii);
0
g. Adding S5.6.1.12;
0
h. Revising S6.1.1(d), S6.1.2(a)(1)(ii), S6.1.2(d)(2)(i) and (ii), and 
S6.2.3;
0
i. Removing and reserving S6.3 and S7.1.1;
0
j. Revising S7.1.2(d) and (e) and adding S7.1.2(f);
0
k. Removing and reserving S9.1(b);
0
l. Revising S9.1(f), S9.3.1, S9.3.2, and the introductory text of 
S10.2.1;
0
m. Removing and reserving S10.2.1(a) and (b)(1);
0
n. Revising the first sentence of S10.2.1(b)(2), the introductory text 
of S10.2.1(c)(1)(i), and the introductory text of S10.2.2;
0
o. Adding S10.2.3; and,
0
p. Adding Figures 13, 14a, and 14b.
    The revisions and additions read as follows:


Sec.  571.213  Child restraint systems.

* * * * *
    S4. Definitions.
* * * * *
    Child restraint system means any device, except Type I or Type II 
seat

[[Page 11648]]

belts, designed for use in a motor vehicle or aircraft to restrain, 
seat, or position children who weigh 36 kilograms (kg) (80 lb) or less.
* * * * *
    S5 * * *

    (e) Each child restraint system tested with a part 572 subpart T 
dummy need not meet S5.1.2.1(a).
    (f) Each child restraint system that is equipped with an internal 
harness to restrain the child need not meet this standard when attached 
to the lower anchors of the child restraint anchorage system, when 
tested with a test dummy of a weight that results in the combined 
weight of the child restraint system and the test dummy to exceed 65 
pounds. Such a child restraint must meet this standard when tested 
using its internal harnesses to restrain such a test dummy while 
attached to the standard seat assembly using the belt system.
* * * * *
    S5.2.1.2 The applicability of the requirements of S5.2.1.1 to a 
front-facing child restraint, and the conformance of any child 
restraint other than a car bed to those requirements, is determined 
using the largest of the test dummies specified in S7 for use in 
testing that restraint, provided that the 6-year-old dummy described in 
subpart I or subpart N of part 572 of this title and the 10-year-old 
dummy described in subpart T of part 572 of this title, are not used to 
determine the applicability of or compliance with S5.2.1.1. A front 
facing child restraint system is not required to comply with S5.2.1.1 
if the target point on either side of the dummy's head is below a 
horizontal plane tangent to the top of--* * *
* * * * *
    S5.4.3.2 Direct restraint. Except for belt-positioning seats, each 
belt that is part of a child restraint system and that is designed to 
restrain a child using the system and to attach the system to the 
vehicle, and each Type I and lap portion of a Type II vehicle belt that 
is used to attach the system to the vehicle shall, when tested in 
accordance with S6.1, impose no loads on the child that result from the 
mass of the system, or--
* * * * *
    S5.5.2 * * *
    (g)(1) * * *
    (ii) ``Secure this child restraint with the vehicle's child 
restraint anchorage system, if available, or with a vehicle belt.'' 
[For car beds, harnesses, and belt-positioning seats, the first part of 
the statement regarding attachment by the child restraint anchorage 
system (LATCH system) is optional. For belt-positioning seats, the 
second part of the statement regarding attachment by the vehicle belt 
does not apply.] Child restraint systems equipped with internal 
harnesses to restrain the child and with components to attach to a 
child restraint anchorage system and for which the combined weight of 
the child restraint system and the maximum recommended child weight for 
use with internal harnesses exceeds 65 pounds, must be labeled with the 
following statement: ``Do not use the lower anchors of the child 
restraint anchorage system (LATCH system) to attach this child 
restraint when restraining a child weighing more than ----*---- 
[*insert a recommended weight value in English and metric units such 
that the sum of the recommended weight value and the weight of the 
child restraint system does not exceed 65 pounds (29.5 kg)] with the 
internal harnesses of the child restraint.''
* * * * *
    S5.6.1.12 The instructions for child restraint systems equipped 
with an internal harness to restrain the child and with components to 
attach to a child restraint anchorage system, and for which the 
combined weight of the child restraint system and the maximum 
recommended child weight for use with internal harnesses exceeds 65 
pounds, must include the following statement: ``Do not use the lower 
anchors of the child restraint anchorage system (LATCH system) to 
attach this child restraint when restraining a child weighing more than 
----*---- [*insert a recommended weight value in English and metric 
units such that the sum of the recommended weight value and the weight 
of the child restraint system does not exceed 65 pounds (29.5 kg)] with 
the internal harnesses of the child restraint.''
    S6.1.1 Test conditions.
* * * * *
    (d)(1) When using the test dummy specified in 49 CFR part 572, 
subparts I and K, performance tests under S6.1 are conducted at any 
ambient temperature from 19 [deg]C to 26 [deg]C and at any relative 
humidity from 10 percent to 70 percent.
    (2) When using the test dummies specified in 49 CFR part 572, 
subparts N, P, R or T, performance tests under S6.1 are conducted at 
any ambient temperature from 20.6 [deg]C to 22.2 [deg]C and at any 
relative humidity from 10 percent to 70 percent.
* * * * *
    S6.1.2 * * *
    (a) * * *
    (1) * * *
    (ii) Belt-positioning seats. A belt-positioning seat is attached to 
either outboard seating position of the standard seat assembly in 
accordance with the manufacturer's instructions provided with the 
system pursuant to S5.6.1 using only the standard vehicle lap and 
shoulder belt and no tether (or any other supplemental device). Place 
the belt-positioning seat on the standard seat assembly such that the 
center plane of the belt-positioning seat is parallel and aligned to 
the center plane of the outboard seating positions on the standard seat 
assembly and the base of the belt-positioning seat is flat on the 
standard seat assembly cushion. Move the belt-positioning seat rearward 
on the standard seat assembly until some part of the belt-positioning 
seat touches the standard seat assembly back. Keep the belt-positioning 
seat and the seating position center plane aligned as much as possible. 
Apply 133 N (30 pounds) of force to the front of the belt-positioning 
seat rearward into the standard seat assembly and release.
* * * * *
    (d) * * *
    (2) * * *
    (i) The lap portion of Type II belt systems used to restrain the 
dummy is tightened to a tension of not less than 9 N (2 pounds) and not 
more than 18 N (4 pounds).
    (ii) The shoulder portion of Type II belt systems used to restrain 
the dummy is tightened to a tension of not less than 9 N (2 pounds) and 
not more than 18 N (4 pounds).
* * * * *
    S6.2.3 Pull the sling tied to the dummy restrained in the child 
restraint system and apply the following force: 50 N for a system 
tested with a newborn dummy (49 CFR part 572, subpart K); 90 N for a 
system tested with a 12-month-old dummy (49 CFR part 572, subpart R); 
200 N for a system tested with a 3-year-old dummy (49 CFR part 572, 
subpart P); 270 N for a system tested with a 6-year-old dummy (49 CFR 
part 572, subpart N or I); 350 N for a system tested with a weighted 6-
year-old dummy (49 CFR part 572, subpart S); or 437 N for a system 
tested with a 10-year-old dummy (49 CFR part 572, subpart T). The force 
is applied in the manner illustrated in Figure 4 and as follows:
    (a) Add-on Child Restraints. For an add-on child restraint other 
than a car bed, apply the specified force by pulling the sling 
horizontally and parallel to the SORL of the standard seat assembly. 
For a car bed, apply the force by pulling the sling vertically.
    (b) Built-in Child Restraints. For a built-in child restraint other 
than a car bed, apply the force by pulling the sling parallel to the 
longitudinal centerline of the specific vehicle shell or the specific

[[Page 11649]]

vehicle. In the case of a car bed, apply the force by pulling the sling 
vertically.
* * * * *
    S7.1.2 * * *
* * * * *
    (d) A child restraint that is recommended by its manufacturer in 
accordance with S5.5 for use either by children in a specified mass 
range that includes any children having a mass greater than 18 kg (40 
lb) but not greater than 22.7 (50 lb), or by children in a specified 
height range that includes any children whose height is greater than 
1100 mm but not greater than 1250 mm is tested with a 49 CFR part 572, 
subpart N dummy (Hybrid III 6-year-old dummy).
    (e) A child restraint that is recommended by its manufacturer in 
accordance with S5.5 for use either by children in a specified mass 
range that includes any children having a mass greater than 22.7 kg (50 
lb) but not greater than 30 kg (65 lb) or by children in a specified 
height range that includes any children whose height is greater than 
1100 mm but not greater than 1250 mm is tested with a 49 CFR part 572, 
subpart N dummy (Hybrid III 6-year-old dummy) and with a part 572, 
subpart S dummy (Hybrid III 6-year-old weighted dummy).
    (f) A child restraint that is recommended by its manufacturer in 
accordance with S5.5 for use either by children in a specified mass 
range that includes any children having a mass greater than 30 kg (65 
lb) or by children in a specified height range that includes any 
children whose height is greater than 1250 mm is tested with a 49 CFR 
part 572, subpart T dummy (Hybrid III 10-year-old dummy).
* * * * *
    S9.1 Type of clothing.
* * * * *
    (f) Hybrid III 6-year-old dummy (49 CFR Part 572, Subpart N) and 
Hybrid III 6-year-old weighted dummy (49 CFR Part 572, Subpart S), and 
Hybrid III 10-year-old dummy (49 CFR part 572, subpart T). When used in 
testing under this standard, the dummies specified in 49 CFR part 572, 
Subparts N and S, are clothed as specified in Subpart N and with child 
or youth size 13 M sneakers weighing not more than 0.45 kg each. When 
used in testing under this standard, the dummy specified in 49 CFR part 
572, Subpart T, is clothed as specified in Subpart T and with youth 
size 3 sneakers weighing not more than 0.6 kg each.
* * * * *
    S9.3.1 When using the test dummies conforming to part 572 C, I, or 
K, prepare the dummies as specified in this paragraph. Before being 
used in testing under this standard, dummies must be conditioned at any 
ambient temperature from 19 [deg] C to 25.5 [deg] C and at any relative 
humidity from 10 percent to 70 percent, for at least 4 hours.
    S9.3.2 When using the test dummies conforming to part 572 subparts 
N, P, R, S or T, prepare the dummies as specified in this paragraph. 
Before being used in testing under this standard, dummies must be 
conditioned at any ambient temperature from 20.6[deg] to 22.2[deg]C and 
at any relative humidity from 10 percent to 70 percent, for at least 4 
hours.
* * * * *
    S10.2.1 Newborn dummy and 12-month-old dummy. Position the test 
dummy according to the instructions for child positioning that the 
manufacturer provided with the system under S5.6.1 or S5.6.2, while 
conforming to the following:
    (b) * * *
    (2) When testing rear-facing child restraint systems, place the 
newborn, or 12-month-old dummy in the child restraint system so that 
the back of the dummy torso contacts the back support surface of the 
system. * * *
* * * * *
    (c)(1)(i) When testing forward-facing child restraint systems, 
extend the arms of the 12-month old test dummy as far as possible in 
the upward vertical direction. Extend the legs of the 12-month-old test 
dummy as far as possible in the forward horizontal direction, with the 
dummy feet perpendicular to the centerline of the lower legs. Using a 
flat square surface with an area of 2,580 square mm, apply a force of 
178 N, perpendicular to:
* * * * *
    S10.2.2 Other dummies generally. When using: (1) the Hybrid III 3-
year-old (part 572, subpart P), Hybrid II 6-year-old (part 572, subpart 
I), and Hybrid III weighted 6-year-old (part 572, subpart S) in child 
restraint systems including belt-positioning seats; (2) the Hybrid III 
6-year-old (part 572, subpart N) and the Hybrid III 10-year-old (part 
572, subpart T) in child restraint systems other than belt-positioning 
seats, position the dummy in accordance with S5.6.1 or S5.6.2, while 
conforming to the following:
* * * * *
    S10.2.3 Hybrid III 6-year-old in belt-positioning seats and Hybrid 
III 10-year-old in belt-positioning seats. When using the Hybrid III 6-
year-old (part 572, subpart N) or the Hybrid III 10-year-old (part 572, 
subpart T) in belt-positioning seats, position the dummy in accordance 
with S5.6.1 or S5.6.2, while conforming to the following:
    (a) Prepare the dummy. (1) When using the Hybrid III 10-year-old 
dummy, prepare the dummy according to the following:
    (i) Set the dummy's neck angle at the SP-16 setting (``SP'' means 
standard procedure), see Figure 14a.
    (ii) Set the dummy's lumbar angle at the SP-12 setting, see Figure 
14b. This is done by aligning the notch on the lumbar adjustment 
bracket with the SP-12 notch on the lumbar attachment.
    (iii) Adjust the limb joints to 1-2 g while the torso is in the 
seated position.
    (iv) Apply double-sided tape to the surface of a lap shield, which 
is a piece of translucent silicone rubber 3 mm 0.5 mm thick 
(50A durometer) cut to the dimensions specified in Figure 13. Place the 
lap shield on the pelvis of the dummy. Align the top of the lap shield 
with the superior anterior edge of the pelvis skin. Attach the lap 
shield to the dummy.
    (v) Apply double-sided tape to one side of a pelvis positioning 
pad, which is a 125 x 95 x 20 mm (+/-2 mm tolerance in each of the 
three dimensions) piece of closed cell (Type 2 according to ASTM D-
1056-07) (incorporated by reference; see Sec.  571.5) foam or rubber 
cut from material having the following specifications: compression 
resistance between 9 to 17 psi in a compression-deflection test 
specified in ASTM D-1056-07 (incorporated by reference; see Sec.  
571.5), and a density of 7 to 12.5 lb/ft\3\. Center the long axis of 
the pad on the posterior of the pelvis with the top edge of the foam 
aligned with the superior edge of the pelvis skin. Attach the pelvis 
positioning pad to the dummy.
    (vi) Dress and prepare the dummy according to S9.
    (2) When using the Hybrid III 6-year-old dummy, prepare the dummy 
according to the following:
    (i) If necessary, adjust the limb joints to 1-2 g while the torso 
is in the seated position.
    (ii) Apply double-sided tape to the surface of a lap shield, which 
is a piece of translucent silicone rubber 3 mm thick 0.5 mm 
thick (50A durometer) cut to the dimensions specified in Figure 13. 
Place the lap shield on the pelvis of the dummy. Align the top of the 
lap shield with the superior anterior edge of the pelvis skin. Attach 
the lap shield to the dummy.
    (iii) Dress and prepare the dummy according to S9.
    (b) Position the belt-positioning seat according to 
S6.1.2(a)(1)(ii).
    (c) Position the dummy in the belt-positioning seat.

[[Page 11650]]

    (1) Place the dummy on the seat cushion of the belt-positioning 
seat such that the plane of the posterior pelvis is parallel to the 
plane of the seat back of the belt-positioning seat, standard seat 
assembly or vehicle seat back, but not touching. Pick up and move the 
dummy rearward, maintaining the parallel planes, until the pelvis 
positioning pad, if used, or the pelvis or back of the dummy and the 
back of the belt-positioning seat or the back of the standard seat 
assembly, are in minimal contact.
    (2) Straighten and align the arm segments horizontally, then rotate 
the arms upward at the shoulder as far as possible without contacting 
the belt-positioning seat. Straighten and align the legs horizontally 
and extend the lower legs as far as possible in the forward horizontal 
direction, with the feet perpendicular to the centerline of the lower 
legs.
    (3) Using a flat square surface with an area of 2580 square 
millimeters, apply a force of 178 N (40 lb) first against the dummy 
crotch and then against the dummy thorax on the midsagittal plane of 
the dummy, perpendicular to:
    (i) The plane of the back of the belt-positioning seat, in the case 
of a belt-positioning seat with a back, or,
    (ii) The plane of the back of the standard seat assembly or vehicle 
seat, in the case of a backless belt-positioning seat or built-in 
booster.
    (4) Rotate the arms of the dummy down so that they are 
perpendicular to the torso.
    (5) Bend the knees until the back of the lower legs are in minimal 
contact with the belt-positioning seat, standard seat assembly or 
vehicle seat. Position the legs such that the outer edges of the knees 
are 180 +/- 10 mm apart for the Hybrid III 6-year-old dummy and 220 +/- 
10 mm apart for the Hybrid III 10-year-old dummy. Position the feet 
such that the soles are perpendicular to the centerline of the lower 
legs. In the case of a belt-positioning seat with a back, adjust the 
dummy so that the shoulders are parallel to a line connecting the 
shoulder belt guides. This can be accomplished by leaning the torso 
such that the dummy's head and neck are centered on the backrest 
components of the belt-positioning seat. In case of a backless child 
restraint, adjust the dummy's torso so that the head is as close to 
laterally level as possible.
    (d) Apply the belt. Attach the vehicle belts and tighten them as 
specified in S6.1.2.
    (e) Dummy final positioning. (1) Check the leg, feet, thorax and 
head positions and make any necessary adjustments to achieve the 
positions described in S10.2.3(c)(5). Position the legs, if necessary, 
so that the leg placement does not inhibit thorax movement in tests 
conducted under S6.
    (2) Rotate each dummy arm downwards in the plane parallel to the 
dummy's midsagittal plane until the arm contacts a surface of the child 
restraint system or the standard seat assembly, in the case of an add-
on system, or the specific vehicle shell or specific vehicle, in the 
case of a built-in system, as appropriate. Position the arms, if 
necessary, so that the arm placement does not inhibit torso or head 
movement in tests conducted under S6.
* * * * *
BILLING CODE 4910-59-P
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR27FE12.001


[[Page 11651]]


[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR27FE12.002


    Issued on: February 16, 2012.
David L. Strickland,
Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2012-4134 Filed 2-21-12; 11:15 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-59-C