Five key ways your child's car seat keeps them safe in a collision
Picture from Maxi-Cosi, featuring the Rodifix Booster.
A car seat is designed for function: to keep your child safe when travelling in a vehicle. Here are five ways a car seat does that:
1. It keeps them in the vehicle.
Cars are designed for adults and not kids or infants. If your child was using just a vehicle belt, it’s likely your child would slip out during a collision. By using an appropriate child restraint, correctly fitted to your car and your child, you drastically increase the chances of your child staying securely in the vehicle in the event of an accident.
2. A car seat helps kinetic force hit your child in the strongest part of their body and across their body.
You don’t want the forces of an accident to hit your child in the neck, or in a vital organ. The car seat’s harness and the car seat’s position help ensure that any kinetic force that hits your child hits them in the best place – the strongest, largest part of their body. The car seat also helps the energy of a crash distribute across your child’s body, so it’s less focussed on one place.
3. A car seat distributes kinetic force away from your child.
The car seat transfers force that would have hit your child, into your child’s seat. This is why it’s important to dispose of your car seat after an accident.
4. Car seats help children slow down.
A child who isn’t properly restrained will travel forwards and may slam into the seat in front. A good car seat will slow this movement down, so that your child doesn’t hit into the seat in front of them (or go through the windshield).
5. A car seat protects their head, neck, and spinal cord.
In a rear-facing car seat your child will travel into the shell of their seat and be cushioned on impact. In a forward facing seat, they are brought back into their seat earlier and are less likely to sustain head or limb injuries.
The imagery associated with car accidents is horrifying, and at Baby Box we do try not to lecture. The reality is though, that once you know how much of a difference a properly installed car seat can make, it’s an imperative to sort your child’s car seat out. They deserve it, and so do you.