Child in the car? The law and common sense require all children below 150cm height to travel in car seats. In case of sudden braking or other dynamic manoeuvre a small child without child restrain is defenceless. There is no doubt about the necessity of a safety seat. Choosing and assembling the right models is a bigger problem. To make it easy we will provide you with a handful of concretes.
A well- fitted car sear is an absolute must! Even if that is in someone else’s car like taxi. Even if we only go to the neighbouring intersection or to a nearby shop, even when we think that nothing bad can happen. Holding a child by an adult has no safeguard at all. During the emergency stop, it is impossible to hold the baby as at that moment it weighs more than 90kg.
Now, how we choose the right one? We adjust the car seat to the age and size of the child. Car seats are available in several weight categories. Make sure to check your car rental offers the right categories.
Baby car seat – Cat. 0 and 0+.
Newborns and infants are assigned Cat. 0 (0-10kg, up to 9 months) and Cat. 0+ (0-13kg, up to 18 months)
The safest way is to place the car seat in the opposite direction to the car ride. This is recommendable till the child is 3 years old only. Here we can find seats with ISOFIX system as well. Here we must take into account not only the baby’s weight but also whether not not his or her head is protected. The baby’s head can’t protrude over the back of the restraint.
For children aged from 9 months to 3-4 years its Cat. 1 (9-18kg)
When a child will grow out the seat for infant, we will need another seat which is designed for children up to 18kg. In this type of seats, the child is secured with a 5- point safety seat belt.
Cat. 1 (9-18 kg, 9 months to 3-4 years) and Cat. 2 (15-25kg) 3-4 to 6-7 years
When the child reaches 18kg or more, we should already use the sear with backrest. On the back there are holes through which the safety belt is inserted in a way that it is laid on the child’s baby and do not change the position during the ride. In these seats the backrest cannot be conducted below the line of sight of the child.
(15-25 kg, from 3-4 to 6-7 years) and Category 3 (22-36kg) is for children age 6-7 to 10-12 years.
The booster seats are recommended only when the child reaches at least 135cm in height. Than we can use a 3-point seat belt and it is safer if we use the booster seat at the rear seat.
We can only give up completely with the child seat if the seat belt lies across the shoulder and thigh. In other way if it runs across the belly or laid on the neck, the child will still need a booster seat.
It is crucial to select the child seat carefully not guided by its exterior design but by the results of the tests which car seats are subjected to. The vitality of children’s car seats is 10 years and 5 years for infants. When buying a second hand car seat, we must check in case of any damages or destructions.
If your car is equipped with the ISOFIX system, it is a good idea to choose a car seat that fits it. ISOFIX allows for a much safer installation of a cars seat. It allows for a tight integration with the vehicle. If it goes about the seat belts, there might always be some backlash that make the child is less protected.
The safest place to carry the child is at the rear middle seat. Even though the law permits to carry children in the front seat, we do not recommend it. If we already decide to do that, we need to remember that it is only possible when the air bag is turned off.
Source: Icelandic Transport Authority
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