60% of car seats are installed incorrectly!!

And 99% of parents thinks they are correctly fitted!

According to Good Egg Safety, on a national level, 6 out of 10 car seats are installed incorrectly! That is scary!

 “Figures released by Good Egg Safety indicate a 13% rise in badly fitted child car seats in the four-year period 2010-2013.
The figures – which are based on more than 10,500 tests conducted by Good Egg across England, Scotland and Wales – show a rise in unsafe fitting
from 47% in 2010, to 55% in 2011, 57% in 2012 and 60% in 2013.” – Road Safety GB <<Article>>

 

That they are installed incorrectly doesn’t just mean that they look like this:

1486630_372639349546587_1050015213_n (1)

The car seat is not even installed. The seatbelt has just been strapped across the car seat and baby, and buckled in. A fatality waiting to happen!

 

It can be something “small” that we might not even think that much about, like this:

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Straps are so loose that in the event of any impact, the child is most likely going to be sent flying out of the seat. Straps need to be nice and snug!

 

What can happen if the straps aren’t tight enough? This crash test video will show you (below):

 

Another lethal error that is seen are these:

Charlie is showing an ill fitted baby carrier. Photo cred: rearfacingtoddlers.com

Charlie is showing an ill fitted baby carrier. Photo cred: rearfacingtoddlers.com

 

The picture on the left shows the shoulder belt threaded in the path of where the lap belt should go, and the lap belt is going behind the seat through the path of what should be the shoulder belt. The picture on the right shows the the car seat forward facing.

The baby car seat we buy is a Group 0+ seat. They can only be installed rear facing! There are no “faces both ways” in this group of car seats! If the baby’s car seat is installed like this, this is what is going to happen (video below):

This crash test video shows us what an impact at 64km/h looks like if the car seat is installed incorrectly, like the two photos above. It’s not a pretty sight is it? Personally I find it a little hard to watch. 😦

Some errors are all most invisible to the naked eye..

  • Foot-prop:
notgreen

Always remember to make sure the green light is either “glowing” or “showing” clearly! This indicates that the foot-prop is correctly installed on the ground.

 

The foot prop should always have the green indicator showing clearly when snapped in place. If it doesn’t have any indicators make sure it’s firmly placed on the ground and in the correct angle according to your car seat manual.

 

  • Harness postiion:

 

Straps FF

Britax Duelfix installed in ‘forward facing’ mode. Straps are below shoulders. This is wrong.

 

When the car seat is installed in the forward facing position, the correct placement of the harness is at or above the child’s shoulders. Not below, like Henry is demonstrating in this picture. This is very important because when the child is forward facing during a frontal collision, the crash forces will cause the child’s body to be thrown forward. The harness straps should be positioned at or above the child’s shoulders when forward facing to most effectively decrease the amount of distance the child will travel when propelled forward and to limit the forces on the child’s spine and shoulders.

Crash test video example of wrongly positioned harness:

 

Britax Max Way is a rear facing car seat. Headrest is pulled to the top, making the straps go far above the child's shoulders.

Britax Max Way is a rear facing car seat. Headrest is pulled to the top, making the straps go far above the child’s shoulders.

 

 

During a frontal crash, the most common type of collision, the crash forces will cause a rear facing child’s body to ride up the seat shell back. The harness straps should be positioned at or below the child’s shoulders to firmly hold the child down in the car seat. If the harness straps are above the child’s shoulders when rear facing, the child would continue to ride up the seat back and potentially expose their head above the car seat shell, leaving their head vulnerable to injury. This is particularly important in infant car seats (Group 0/0+)!

 

  • Isofix:

 

Isofix. Photo credit: http://bit.ly/1eBKDCZ

Isofix.
Photo credit: http://bit.ly/1eBKDCZ

 

Even with ISOFIX seats, you can get a bad install. Here only one of the ISOFIX connectors are properly plugged in. This can easily happen, so make sure to check that the connectors are green and good to go! 🙂

 

  • Buckle crunch:
Buckle crunch! Photo credit: http://bit.ly/1hDlVIr

Buckle crunch!
Photo credit: http://bit.ly/1hDlVIr

Not all car seats fit in all cars. A common problem is ‘buckle crunch’. If your car seat has this, it’s not compatible with either your car, or that position in the car. Some seats offer more then one belt path and some cars have different belt buckles depending on where in the car you are. Always make sure you watch out for this! 🙂

 

  • Belt path:

Crash test video of wrong belt path install:

The car seat has red for forward facing belt path, and blue for rear facing belt path. This is universal on all car seats. Make sure you read your car seat manual fully and properly while installing your car seat! 🙂

* * *

 

I hope this post has been informative! 🙂 ❤

For my post dedicated to the harness and how to keep your child safe in the car seat during colder times, please go HERE!

 

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Click image to go to GoodEgg’s website and search for a Free car seat check near you!

 

Q:// Did you learn something new? Did you find this post informative?
Let me know in a comment below what type of errors you have come across! 🙂

 

 

 

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New car seats from Joie!

Joietilt

The Joie Tilt has been on the market for quite some time, but it was sold as a rear facing 0+ seat (up to 13KG).

Now, you can use the Joie Tilt rear facing until the seat is fully outgrown at 18KG!

Continue reading

And Then There Was i-Size!

I must apologize for not posting too much these days, I have so much I want to write about. 
Thinking of it I should really try putting up more drafts when I have time, and then have them publish then and then! hehe
It’s just the summer time isn’t it? We don’t have time to sit much inside in this nice warm weather, but I still feel bad for not posting in a while. 🙂
Buuut..what can you do when the sun is shining and your melting away in 30C? ^^

As you all (who follow me anyway hehe) know, I went to the Maxi Cosi iSize event. 🙂
It was FUN. I learned a great deal, had a nice chat to people and I got a sneak peak on iSize. Super exited!

So what is iSize and what does it mean?

The following pictures and information is taken from the i-Size brochure I was given at the meeting: (Text in bold are my own.)

iSize is a new legislation that increases the safety level of children in cars and will extend rearward facing travel and promote the use of IsoFix as a new European standard. It wad enforced on 9th July 2013, while the current standard ECE R44/04 will remain in effect for all other child car seats until 2018.

This legislation makes rearward facing travelling mandatory up to 15 months old for i-Size products. The standard ensures a better protection at higher forces in the case of frontal and side collisions and a better protecttion of head and neck. i-Size also moves to a length classification for choosing the right car seat instead of weight.
i-Size also promotes IsoFix, which has less chance of being incorrectly used than belted car seats.

Why do we need new rules?

Child safety has been evolving over time. The number of child fatalities has decreased but car accidents are still the leading cause of child deaths.

week
Many parents move their baby to the next stage car seat at around 9 months because either their child is too heavy to carry in a group 0+ car seat or the baby’s feet stick out of the seat shell. Also, the current law accepts 9kg for group 1, but this is not the safest way of travelling!

The head and neck are the most vulnerable during a crash.

head

A child’s spine does not begin to fuse until approx 3 years of age, and is not done fusing until approx 6 years old, one of the main reasons to RF as long as possible. The head in proportion to the body is quite heavy and large, accounting for 25% of their body weight, while an adult’s head only takes up 6%.
The developmental rate of the skeleton is the same in any child no matter how heavy or tall they are, meaning your one year old may look 2 years old or be the size of a two year old, but inside, he’s skeletal build is no where near. 

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The human spine is made up of 24 vertebrae, seven cervical (neck), 12 thoracic (upper back) and five lumbar (lower back) vertebrae.
The photo shows the vertebrae of a one year-old on the left, and those of a six year-old on the right. In a one year-old each vertebra consists of three pieces of bone which are connected by cartilage.
The picture on the left shows where in the body these bones are located.
The bones in the neck of a small child are not developed enough to protect the spinal cord. When they are involved in a car crash in a forward facing car seat, the weight of the head combined with the immature skeleton, can cause the spinal cord to stretch up to two inches. If it stretches just half an inch it will snap. This is known as internal decapitation and causes paralysis or death.
Phto and text credit: http://www.rearfacingtoddlers.com

In Conclution…

It is safer to travel rearward facing longer and to use IsoFix (make no mistake, belted is just as safe as long as it is correctly installed, but to make things easier i-Size has, as mentioned, decided to focus on IsoFix as this is simpler) Maxi – Cosi’s involvement on the i-Size legislation will improve the compatibility between car seats and cars with the support leg. It will be supporting all regulating organisations such as GRSP and CLEPA. Plus, Maxi-Cosi have been involved in measuring and defining new sizing classifications (3D child project).

* * *

27

What do  the numbers say?

People hate the numbers. How many times haven’t you heard the line; “Back in the day…” or “When I was young..” “…and I’m FINE!”?
I imagine that if more people knew the actual numbers maybe they wouldn’t use these phrases. Fact of the matter is that we didn’t know as much  then as we do know, or…we did some places (see Sweden), but the rest of the world I imagine had a hard time thinking that just ‘Søta Bror’ would know more then a fair share of other excellent researchers right?

Well, let me show you the numbers dated from 1999 to 2008:

statistickExcuse the small finger prints. xD I have a small person who grabbed it hehe. 

Another important thing, and one of the reasons why i-Size is choosing to focus on IsoFix is as I stated previously, that it’s simpler to install. Though it ofc. happens that they are wrongly installed! BUT it IS simpler.

Have a look at this cake that shows fatalities related to the car seat use: (this is not based on RF, but car seat use in general):

roundThe numbers are quite shocking aren’t they? 😦

 

injuries

As we can see, the head and neck have the highest percentage of injury in a frontal collision.
We can also see that in a side impact collision, the head injury is still on the highest percentage followed by chest.
I am therefore very glad the new i-Size makes side impact testing mandatory!
Some car seats are in fact side impact tested, but this is not something covered in ECE R44/04 ‘s testing to get approved.

* * *

I have now tried to cover everything on i-Size, but if  you have any more questions please don’t hesitate to write it in a comment below, or on my face book page  –> https://www.facebook.com/ErfMission if you like this blog, I would love for you to hit the “Like” button on the page. 🙂

And as a quick “sum it up” :

i-size.keyfacts

Have a wonderful weekend and I shall see you all later! 🙂