One of the main responsibilities of being a parent is making sure your children’s safety at all times — including during car rides. Each year, hundreds of children and babies are killed while thousands are hospitalised due to vehicle accidents. The number is even higher than the number of children who die from cancer and asthma combined. These deaths can be easily prevented by doing simple precautionary measures such as using good quality car seats designed specifically for children and babies.
Did you know that adult seat belts are not suitable to be used for children as they are smaller than average adults, thus the standard safety belts in a vehicle do not properly fit to protect children’s bodies? The best way to keep children and babies safe in the car is for parents to be aware of the safety precautions for kids in cars. This includes knowing which best car seats are perfect for children according to age, how to install car seats correctly, how to fasten and adjust the harness properly, and so on.
In Australia, children under seven years must use a child car seat that properly fits their bodies when traveling in a car. There are legal requirements in Australia that specify on child restraint laws which include which type of car seats parents should get for their children based on the child’s age and the position of children in the car, which can be concluded as follows:
- Under six months — must sit in the back row of a vehicle with a rear-facing car seat or baby capsule
- Six months to four years — must sit in the back row of a vehicle with a rear-facing or forward-facing car seat with an in-built harness. They are allowed to sit in the front row if the vehicle only has one row of seats using an appropriate child car seat.
- Four years to seven years — can sit in the front row of a vehicle with an appropriate child car seat with an in-built harness or booster seat which features fastened and adjusted adult seatbelt.
- Seven years and older — can sit in the front row using an appropriate booster seat and seatbelt.
It is imperative that the car seats for your child should meet the Australian/New Zealand Standard AS/NZS 1754 that recently updated to include ISOFIX. Next time you’re buying a new child car seat, make sure to look for the standards approved sticker.
In Australia, it is illegal by law to drive or travel in a car without seatbelts. All passengers in a car must use properly adjusted and fastened seatbelt during car rides, including children. It is also illegal for adults to carry a child on their laps or share a seatbelt with a child or another passenger. Another way to ensure your child’s safety in a car is by setting a good example by always wearing your own seatbelt in a traveling car.
What are the basic guides for child car seats? First, your child’s car seat must be appropriate for your child’s size and age. The car seats must be installed correctly. Parents need to decide on using either the seat belt or lower anchors to secure the car seat. Once the child is forward-facing, use the tether to ensure that the seatbelt in the car seat has been fastened properly and the harness has been properly adjusted.
The back row is the safest location to seat your children. However, children between four years to seven years old are allowed to sit in the front row of a vehicle but with specific requirements, such as using the appropriate child car seat. Children over seven years old can also sit in the front row of a car. Make sure to adjust the seat as far back as possible to protect the child from injury if airbags are activated.
There are other safety tips that parents must follow to ensure their children’s safety in a moving vehicle, one of them is keeping them comfortable and happy during car rides. Children under five years old may throw tantrums out of the blue. This can cause distractions for the drivers and may lead to car accidents that can injure all the passengers inside the car.
There are several ways to keep your children occupied during car rides. You can chat with your children while you drive. Discuss light topics such as what to do once you arrive at home. You can also play your child’s favourite music (perhaps play Baby Shark?). Provide plenty of distractions for your child to keep them happy. You can provide books, toys, hand-held games, or smartphones (with limited screen time), as well as snacks and drinks. Pull over to the side of the road if your children suddenly need attention or assistance with something.
Here are some of the best car seats for your children :Click Here to See More
Britax Safe-n-Sound B-First+
This is the next generation luxurious convertible child car seat! B-first features click tight installation system and advanced Side Impact Cushion Technology (SICT) that provide effortless and secure installation. Thermo5 high-performance fabric and ventilation zones offer safety and flexibility to your children during car rides. It’s comfortable and deployable — and most importantly, it provides safety and freedom of space!
Britax Safe-n-Sound Unity ISOFIX
This ISOFIX standard compatible baby capsule provides the ultimate safety and comfort for your babies. Also, this is the only baby capsule suitable for low birth weight and premature infants without restrictive medical conditions. Britax Safe-n-Sound Unity provides maximum protection to ensure that your baby travels safely and conveniently. The ISOFLEX connectors make it easy to install.
Bugaboo Turtle by Nuna Car Seat with Base
This cute child car seat is the solution for driving safely with your baby. Bugaboo Turtle features a lightweight design and integrated adapters that allow you to carry your baby from pram to car, and vice versa! It offers the ultimate comfort for your baby while allowing you to keep your eye on them at all times. It is also very easy to install in your car.
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