Feeling a bit confused about the new regulations covering child car booster cushions? If so, you're not alone.
Tanya Robinson, child safety centre manager at the firm TRL, has passed on some advice for parents about the best way to ensure their child is in the appropriate seat
As the past UK law stood , all children travelling in a vehicle had to use the correct car seat for their height, age and weight until they were either 12 years old or 135cm tall - whichever came first.
Children weighing as little as 15kg (2st 4lbs) were permitted to travel in backless booster seats .
Under the new rules that came into force in March , backless booster seats - also known as booster cushions - will only be approved for use for children taller than 125cm and weighing more than 22kg (3st 6.5lbs).
To make it even more complicated, the backless booster seats bought before the law changed can still be used as the regulation will only apply to new products appearing on the market.
Ms Robinson said: "There is a large amount of uncertainty among parents and carers about the latest changes to child restraint regulations.
"Whilst this latest change affects the types of child restraint available in future, there is not going to be a ban on “boosters”.
"What it means is that new booster cushions approved and coming to market after the change to Regulation 44 will only be suitable for children over 22kg and 125cm height.
"However, TRL recommend, where possible, to use a high back booster seat.
Tanya Robinson's top safety tips:
- Regardless of the detail of the regulations, it is vital that parents ensure that their child is in the correct type of seat for their height and weight, as this will allow for maximum protection in the event of an accident.
- Parents faced with the growing range and style of seats should remember there is no race to move a child into the next type of seat because they get older.
- Ensure that the car seat you choose is appropriate for your child’s weight, height and age and that it fits well in your vehicle.
- Always check the markings on the child seat to help identify if the child seat is appropriate for your child.
- Not all car seats are designed to be the same. The instructions that apply to one car seat may not apply to other seats. Always read the manual for your car seat.
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