Car seat 101 – safety first

Did you know that most Scandinavian children travel rear facing until well into their fifth year? This has seen a dramatic improvement in accident survival. In fact, according to rearfacing.co.uk, children are five times safer travelling backwards rather than forwards.

Why Rear Facing? The Facts

Frontal collisions cause the most lethal accidents, most often at high speed with direct impact.

In a forward facing car seat a child’s vulnerable neck is subjected to a massive 300kg force, rear facing the force decreases to 50kg.

In a forward facing car seat, the child is flung forward. The harness catches her body putting enormous stress on the neck, spine and internal organs.

A child’s neck is desperately vulnerable for two reasons. Firstly, her head is 25% of her body: if an adult’s was the same proportion, we would carry 20kg on our shoulders!

Secondly, unlike an adult’s, her spine is still soft with lots of cartilage. So a child’s head is far heavier than the adult equivalent, yet the neck is far weaker. The upshot is that, in the very worst scenario, a child’s neck will stretch so much that it will snap.

Internal Organs

Like the spine, a child’s rib cage is also soft and cannot protect internal organs such as the heart and spleen.

In a rear facing car seat the scenario is totally different. In a frontal collision, the neck is flung into the supporting headrest and the force of the impact is distributed along the whole back of the seat protecting vital organs.

Look out for the Diono Rainier Rear Facing car seat which, with an Infant Insert, will take a child from birth until 22.5kg, the average weight of a 6-year-old.

Other benefits of the Diono Ranier Rear Facing car seat include:

  • Full steel frame and aluminum reinforced sides
  • SuperLATCH connectors with Secureweave webbing
  • Aluminum reinforced 12 position adjustable headrest
  • Folds flat for travel or storage
  • Can be tethered rear-facing
  • Energy absorbing EPS foam in headrest and torso area
  • Infant body support cushions and memory foam for added comfort

Cheeky Cherubs and Scarecrow Farm both stock this fantastic car seat.

 

You can learn more about care seat safety by visiting:

The NZ transport authority

AND in Australia Rearfacing Down under

who offer this comprehensive list of rear-facing to approximately 2-3 years of age(until middle shoulder height marker):

Britax Millennia SICT. ISOFIX Compatible & seat belt install. 0-4 years convertible car seat. 39cm seated torso rear-facing shoulder height marker.
Britax Slimm-Line AHR. ISOFIX Compatible & seat belt install. 0-4 years convertible car seat. 39cm seated torso rear-facing shoulder height marker.
Britax Compaq AHR.  Seat belt install. 0-4 years convertible car seat. 39cm seated torso rear-facing shoulder height marker.
Britax Compaq MK11. Seat belt install. 0-4 years convertible car seat. 39cm seated torso rear-facing shoulder height marker.
InfaSecure Kompressor 4 Treo. ISOFIX Compatible & seat belt install. 0-4 years convertible car seat. 39cm seated torso rear-facing shoulder height marker.
InfaSecure Quattro.  Seat belt install. 0-4 years convertible car seat. 39cm seated torso rear-facing shoulder height marker.
InfaSecure Grandeur.  Seat belt install. 0-8 years convertible car seat. 39cm seated torso rear-facing shoulder height marker.
Babylove Ezy Switch EP. Seat belt install. 0-4 years convertible car seat. 39cm seated torso rear-facing shoulder height marker.

2 Comments

  • My son is 5 years and 2 months, 16kg and 108cm (55cm seated torso) and still rear-faces in his Diono Rainier. I do get some raised eyebrows, but I have a seat with the capacity to rear-face him, so I will continue to do so until he outgrows it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *