As a parent I have an all consuming urge to do the best I can for my children. To protect them from the outside world. For me this is no where more important than in the car. Whenever I go out in the car with my children, I am aware that I am carry my most precious cargo in the back seats.
Choosing and fitting the best car seat we could was something that we put a lot of thought in to before Maxi was born. We subscribed to Which so we could ensure that we got the one that had the best results and arranged a seat fitting by an expert from the local council before he was born, so that we knew how to keep him safe.
I remember that part of the excitement as a first time mum was moving from that stage O car seat to a forward facing stage One, but I worked with a lot of Europeans and they were amazed at the fact that we would be moving our child to a forward facing car seat so soon. This was 6 years ago an d we knew no difference. Well now we do. Children in rear facing car seats are five times safer than in forward facing one. FIVE times. Just take a look at this information from Motors UK on rearfacing carseats
In the UK there is an alarming lack of information available to parents on the topic. The researched commissioned by Motors.co.uk also revealed that over half of UK parents (53% of those interviewed) felt that information on rear facing car seats is inconsistent or confusing, and 52% of parents would buy a rear facing car seat if they were more widely available in the UK.
In the Nordics and US, rear facing car seats are commonplace and legal guidelines state that children should be kept rear-facing until the age of four (or 16 – 25kg in weight). In the UK, however, children may be placed in forward facing car seats once they reach the group 1 band which caters for children of 13kg and above, or eighteen months to four years.
My children are six and seven and have stage two car seats for 4-11 year olds now, but they have backrests on them and I have mo intention of moving them on to stage three seats anytime soon. You can safely say that had more information been available about rear facing car seats when mine were smaller they would have been in them. Car’s are not safe places and anything I can do to make the journey safer for my children I would do.