Kids First: 5 Tips for Child Safety in the Car

We know that your children will always be your main concern and you will always look out for their well-being, therefore, it is important to take all the necessary precautions to keep them safe, especially when they are our passengers in the car. At Tuseguro.com we have prepared a guide on the 5 most important considerations you must have in mind about child safety in your car.  

1. Children must be seated in the rear seats

A rule that all connoisseurs agree on is that children should always be seated in the back of the vehicle . This is because if you have a head-on collision, most of the energy is focused on the front, and the back receives less impact. And it is also recommended that they are sitting in the central part of the seat, since it is the safest position in the event of side collisions.   Also, airbags are designed for adults. Airbags are heavy and usually inflate and deploy in approximately 0.03 seconds, which means that they come out very quickly and with great force to receive the person’s impact in the exact time. With this level of force, an air bag could injure a child. Depending on the country and its child safety regulations, the age varies; however, most agree that children under 12 should travel behind. There are those who recommend that if the children have not reached 1.20 meters in height, they should not travel in the passenger seat, but there are those who argue that they should travel behind until they reach 1.45 meters.   On the other hand, statistics show that the chances of dying in an accident are reduced by 30% if you go in the back seat.

2. Belts or harnesses should be checked regularly

The seat belt was designed to put pressure on the hip bone, one of the strongest in the human body, and on the chest, another part of the very strong body, given its function of protecting soft organs; but it is not the same with child safety. Child restraint systems have been designed for children, which are basically chairs that fit in the rear cabin of the car.   The belts or harnesses that hold these chairs must not be bent or loose because the safety of the child may depend on it. In this sense, you should carefully review the instructions when installing the child restraint system you have selected.

3. Child safety and restraint systems

There are different types of child restraint systems: baby carriers, chairs or boosters ; and each one responds to a specific need for each age. From birth to 18 months, the baby carrier is recommended, where the child is lying down and placed with her back to the seat. The chair is recommended until 4 or 5 years old, and is used specifically as long as the child’s head does not protrude from it. And the booster has the function of adjusting the height of the child so that the seat belt is used properly. Each considerably reduces the impact in the event of a collision.   It should be noted that in a report Published by the World Health Organization, if these devices are installed and used correctly, infant deaths can be reduced by 70%, and by 54% to 80% for young children. On the other hand, the Spanish General Directorate of Traffic ensures that the use of child restraint systems reduces deaths by 75% and injuries by 90% in the event of an accident.

4. Never carry the child loose or in your arms

Statistics indicate that wearing a seat belt can reduce fatal risks in a traffic accident. However, in the case of children, the seat belt must be used in conjunction with a child restraint system. The seat belt is designed so that the handle covers the clavicle and reaches the hip. This means that they are not adjusted to the measurements of children, which could cause serious injuries in the event of an accident.   On the other hand, carrying the child in your arms does not guarantee any type of security. Under the laws of physics, people in a vehicle move at the same speed as the vehicle. In the event of a crash, the vehicle will come to a sudden stop, but the people inside will follow the force of inertia. Speed ​​can multiply the weight of the child up to 50 times, a reality that also affects if the child travels loose,, if one tries to stop a child who weighs about 30 kgs, in a car going at a speed of 50 kilometers per hour, due to inertia, one would be trying to stop a child whose weight is approximately half a ton.

5. Never share a seat belt with a child

The seat belt is ergonomically designed to fit the body of a single person, and is that the pressure it exerts on the body is directly proportional to its size. If used with a child on the lap, the pressure on the child would be higher and in the event of a collision , it could hurt the child greatly. This occurs because the force of the impact exerts a readjustment movement of the belt that makes it tighten more and therefore would push the adult against the child, or even, as it is not designed to hold two people, the belt could open.   It could also happen that the adult receives the blow from the whip of the child’s head, causing injuries to the chest, jaw or head. Always remember that the belt is one-man.   So, then, it is clear that child safety is extremely important when we travel by car with our children. We must always think of them and their well-being at all times.