We’re still talking about car seat safety!
As part of the #CarseatFullstop campaign, we spread the message far and wide about the ins and outs of car seat safety. Here is a quick reminder of the shocking statistics and things you need to do to make sure your children are safe while traveling.
Scary car seat facts I bet you did not know!
- A seat belt is designed for an adult male of over 1.5m tall. For those smaller than that, the seat belt becomes an additional danger unless supported appropriately.
- Car seats reduce the risk of death in passenger cars by 71 % for infants and 54 % for toddlers.
- Currently only 15% of South African children in cars are restrained; that is 85% of children who are not.
Even though our South African law states that children need to be in a car seat up until the age of 3, It is very important to continue using an age appropriate car seat, booster seat or restraint for as long as possible. At least until they properly outgrow the weight and height recommendations on the orange sticker on their last car seat. The last car seat should be a booster seat and must be used until the child is 1.5m tall!
Zoe is almost 4 and I can not imagine just using a seat belt for her. It definitely does not fit or make sense. If your child is not the correct age to travel using the seat belt alone then the seat belt is actually more dangerous for them and can cause terrible harm if in an accident.
If you are not sure how to decide or check if your child is ready to only use the seat belt then you can use the following guide lines to check:
- The shoulder belt should sit exactly in the middle of the child’s shoulder
- The lap belt should sit low across the upper thighs of the child
- The child’s back should be flush with the back rest of the car seat, with their bottom firmly where the back rest and seat meet
- While flush against the back rest, the knees should only bend past the edge of the seat and their feet should be flat on the floor
- The child should be able to sit comfortably in that position, without moving, for as long as the car is in motion.
Remember to make sure that the straps on your child’s car seat are not tangled or twisted, that they are tight enough and there is no room in there for them to slip around. Rather have the straps tighter than looser.
Keep safe on the roads and strap your kids in! Car seat safety is important.
About the Author
Melissa is a happily married mommy of almost-three. Along with 5 year old Zoe and 2 year old Violet, little Ethan will be joining the family in 2019! They live in George in the Western Cape. Mel is a very busy work-at-home-mom, and writes a South African beauty and parenting blog, Pretty Messy Melon.
Melissa on Pretty Messy Melon
My blog focuses on the beautiful things in life. I love sharing my pregnancy, parenting and mommy moments. I enjoy doing product reviews on beauty products as well as mommy and baby related items. You can find news features on upcoming products, giveaways of gorgeous items and personal posts about parenting and life.
Melissa on #CarseatFullstop
It is up to us as parents to keep our children as safe as we can. It is so unsafe for children not to be strapped in, even a small accident can be deadly. Creating awareness is the first step. There are too many parents that do not realise the danger or understand the value in car seats. I was one of them and I have learnt so much just in the past few weeks of preparing for this campaign. Now, I want to help others learn too.
You have the power to save a little life. One share, seen by one person, who straps in one child, saves a life. #CarseatFullstop