Free Child Car Seat Checks
Child car seats
Last updated: 13 April 2012 08:52 UK
Children younger than 12 or under 135 centimetres tall must use an appropriate child restraint
7/10 seats are still failing our safety checks. The Which? Guide has recently carried out an indepth report which shows why so many seats are failing to fit.
Meridian Tonight has recently investigated this issue across the county with some worrying results. They commissioned a two part report showing regional test results and secret filming of local suppliers.
Free child car seat check days are run throughout the year and are sponsored by Baby 2k, Copnor Road and Imperial Car Supermarket
Thursday 3 May Sainsbury’s Farlington
Thursday 7 June ASDA Fratton
Thursday 5 July NCP Market Way (behind Cascades)
Thursday 2 August Mountbatten Centre
Thursday 6 September Tesco North Harbour
Thursday 4 October Pompey Centre (by B&Q)
All events will run from 10.00-3.30
The free child car seat checks are carried out by Baby 2k who assist the Which? Guide with their national child car seat testing and reports.
A large number of child car seats in Portsmouth are not compatible with the car they’re fitted in. This could be because parents have changed cars and not checked to see that their seat would fit correctly or, as in many cases, the store had sold an incompatible seat for the car. This is not unheard of even with big stores so we would strongly advise you to come along to a check day.
Did you know that in a crash at 30mph your body would be thrown forward with a force 40-60 times your own weight? Even a superbaby couldn’t withstand this. Children are still killed in car accidents because they are not properly restrained. You can best protect your children by putting them in a properly fitted seat which is appropriate for their weight and size.
Check out the websites for all major seat manufacturers to use their fit-finders but remember that even these are not fail safe and it’s best to get your seat checked by a professional.
Don’t risk your child’s life. Never carry a child on your lap or use a single seat belt for two passengers, whatever their age.
Adult seat belts aren’t designed for children because children are proportioned differently and their bones are still developing. So until your child is old or tall enough to use an adult seat belt alone, they must use a child’s car seat.
Children’s car seats are designed for different weights – check the label on the seat, which shows the weight range the seat is suitable for. The weight ranges are divided into the following groups:
•’Group 0′ and ‘Group 0+’ – these are rear-facing baby seats suitable for babies up to 13 kilogrammes
•’Group I’ – these are forward-facing baby seats for children between 9 and 18 kilogrammes
•’Group II’ – these are forward-facing child car seats (high back booster seats) for children from 15 to 25 kilogrammes
•’Group III’ – these are high back boosters and booster cushions for children above 22 kilogrammes
Some seats cover more than one group and can be used as your child grows. Check on the seat label.
A guide to your responsibility as a driver
Visit Directgov for full details about seatbealts, child seats and the law.
Some do’s and don’ts relating to seat belts
•Make sure that children under 12 years or under 135cm tall use an appropriate child restraint
•Ensure that all available restraints are in use. Restrained in the back is best, but restrained in the front is better than no restraint at all
•Use the appropriate seat for the weight of your child and make sure children don’t play with the fastenings
•Always wear a restraint, even on the shortest journeys
•Ensure the lap part of the belt is positioned as low as possible over the hips, not across the soft stomach area, and is pulled tight
•Check before buying a child seat that it will fit your car, not all will
•Remember that pregnant women can still wear seat belts safely, if worn correctly
•Remember it is the responsibility of the driver to ensure children under 14 are wearing a suitable restraint
•Allow a child to sit on an adult’s lap, even if the adult is restrained – you would never be able to hold onto them in a 30mph crash
•Allow two people to use the same restraint
•Allow an adult belt to pass across a child’s neck
•Put a rear facing child seat in a front seat with a passenger airbag
•Use an ordinary cushion to raise a child using an adult restraint or use any blankets or cushions underneath or behind your child car seat
Our Road Safety and Active Travel Team can offer advice and resources on fitting a child car seat. Contact us on 023 9268 8262 for details.