The transition to an adult seat belt and safe travel in forward facing seat

Frequently asked questions are when and why you should move to a forward-facing car seat, and how to make sure your child is safely riding in a forward-facing car seat? Important issues that we at Axkid take very seriously.

In Sweden there is broad agreement that a rear-facing car seat is the safest option for children to travel in a car, but this is not always the case in the rest of Europe. However, there comes a time when your child has outgrown a rear-facing car seat, but has not yet reached the optimum length for a car’s three-point adult seat belt. The forward-facing car seat ensures that your child is sufficiently high and that the seat belt is in the correct position for your child. With the newly launched Axkid Bigkid 2 Premium, your child will ride as safely as possible even in a forward-facing car seat.

Axkid recommends switching from a rear-facing child seat later than the regulations state

It is not always easy to follow the advice given when it comes to children in a car, as different regulations can make different recommendations. According to Swedish legislation, children under 135 centimeters must use a car seat, a booster seat or other special child safety device instead of or together with the seat belt must be used. [1] The Swedish Transport Agency[2] and NTF[3] recommend that children up to at least four years old should ride in a rear-facing car seat.  However, we at Axkid recommend that your child go rear facing as long as possible, up to 125 cm.

Backwards is safest

Why do we at Axkid recommend changing to a forward-facing seat later than the regulations state? The reason is simple. A rear-facing car seat continues to be the safest option for children to travel in a car and is five times safer compared to a forward-facing car seat.

In comparison to an adult, the head of a child is large and heavy in relation to the body. Musculature and ligaments in the neck are also not sufficiently developed. In the event of a crash, the load on the head, neck and spine will be significantly lower in a rear-facing car seat. The risk of serious neck injuries and death is thus greatly reduced if you are seated in a rear-facing car seat.

Statistics show that in countries where the child can go forward facing from the age of one year old, the proportion of injured children increases from the age range of zero to one year. In Sweden we see an increase in injury rates only at the age range of three to four years old, the age of children in Sweden where some car seat manufacturers recommend to change from rear-facing to forward facing car seat.

There are several vital reasons why Axkid recommends rear-facing car seats for children up to the age of six.

Therefore, a forward-facing seat is needed

Not using a car seat at all is not safe. Even if your child has outgrown the rear-facing car seat, the child is unlikely to yet have reached the optimal length for the car’s three-point belt. Therefore you should always have the additional protection for children between the age of six and twelve. A front-facing car seat ensures that your child is high enough and that the seat belt is in the correct position. The forward-facing car seat is the final stage of child car seats and then the child is large enough to use the seat belt in the same way as an adult in the car.

When is it time to switch to a front-facing belt seat?

Since all children grow in different ways and different rates, it is of course difficult to say an exact age, height or weight for when to change from a rear-facing to a forward-facing car seat. Axkid recommends changing when the child’s head sticks up by more than a third above the edge of the headrest, approximately at the height of the child’s eyes. It is also time to turn around when your child has passed the maximum weight or maximum length of the rear-facing car seat.  Axkids’ product range includes rear-facing child seats that can be used for children who are up to 125 cm and weigh up to 25 kg, i.e. average values for children aged six years.

Axkid ONE

Axkid Minikid 2With Axkid Bigkid 2 Premium, your child will ride safely in a forward-facing car seat and seat belt

Axkid Bigkid 2 Premium is a height adjustable car seat with a long back length that is comfortable to use up to 150 cm. Axkid Bigkid 2 Premium is therefore a perfect choice for the older child who has not yet reached the optimal length for the car’s three-point belt but still needs a car seat to ride safely.

Axkid Bigkid 2 Premium is an update to our previous model Axkid Bigkid and comes with a number of improvements. Axkid Bigkid 2 Premium has 6 cm longer back than its predecessor and the back length can now be adjusted vertically in 9 different steps, against the previous 7 steps. This results in one of the longest back lengths on the market which not only ensures that Axkid Bigkid 2 Premium provides a perfect fit for your child’s height but also increases the safety of your child. The Axkid Bigkid 2 Premium has multiple recline positions, which allows for a safe and comfortable installation.

Safety has been improved by adjusting the position of the seat belt guide of the shoulder strap and adding a fourth point of contact to the lap belt to ensure that the belt is in the correct position. The best position for the lap belt is lying above the hip bone but not over the stomach. The new central belt retainer together with the included shoulder belt guides ensure an optimal positioning of the seat belt in the Axkid Bigkid 2 Premium.

Axkid Bigkid 2 Premium comes with an improved side impact protection. The side impact cover (ASIP) now has a safe position, which means that you always equip the side impact cover correctly and thus ensures a correct installation which provides increased safety in the event of a collision from the side.

Axkid Bigkid 2 Premium enable a safe ride even after your child has become too big for a rear-facing car seat.

 

 


 

[1]

10 § punkt 1, Trafikförordning (1998:1276). En sådan skyddsanordning ska även vara typgodkänd enligt EU:s reglementen. Enligt 6 §Transportstyrelsens föreskrift TSFS 2014:52 ska en särskild skyddsanordning för barn ska vara typgodkänd enligt; 

  1. rådetsdirektiv 77/541/EEG av den 28 juni 1977 om tillnärmning av medlemsstaternas lagstiftning om bilbälten och fasthållningsanordningar i motorfordon, i lydelsen enligt kommissionens direktiv 2000/3/EG,  
  2. UN/ECE-reglemente 44-03, 
  3. UN/ECE-reglemente 129, eller
    4. en senare version av nämnda reglementen

[2]

Trafikverket, se https://www.transportstyrelsen.se/sv/vagtrafik/Trafikregler/I-fordonet/Sa-skyddar-du-barnen—regler-och-tips/.

[3]

Nationalföreningen för trafiksäkerhetens främjandets, se https://ntf.se/konsumentupplysning/barn-i-bil/barn-0-4-ar/.