Why do children have to sit in a child car seat?
Child car seat is really important to children up until the age of 12. Parents need to prepare a one before their baby is born. Although Malaysia has yet to strictly enforce the rule where child seat is required for children, many parties agreed that parents must have and use it in the car for their children’s safety. There are many cases where the baby could have avoid from injuries or less serious injuries when accidents happened if they were safely strapped in the child car seat. Children often suffer from fatal injuries even though the accident might not be brutally fatal. This is because they were either being carried by an adult, sit without a seat belt or even with seat belt, the child was not properly buckled because of his/her small size. Many parents neglect their children’s car safety just because they think a child car seat is unnecessary or because they think that it is expensive.
Does one car seat fit all size?
There are four types of seating methods since the baby is born until he/she can fully sit in a car like a normal adult. We have to understand each of them to ensure our child’s safety. As the child grow, he/she will have to switch to the next suitable seat to ensure his/her safety. Parents need to survey and do some research of the product first before they buy one. If the wrong car seat was chosen, ie. does not suit the child’s size, he/she may face dangerous situation in an accident. For example, an infant would need a smaller and adjustable (able to recline at different angles) car seat so the baby can be strapped safely in it and also supporting its back bone. A toddler would need a toddler car seat with an additional insert cushion so its neck is safely protected. When the toddler is taller, the cushion can be removed to fit him in the same car seat.
1) Rear-facing Car Seat
This kind of car seat is designed for newborn baby until the age of 2. Parents are advised to install rear-facing car seat until the weight and height of the child reach its maximum level. The reason infant and tiny size child has to be placed in a rear-facing car seat is that when great force is exerted onto the car seat, its shell acting as a protective shield absorbs the impact energy. Forces of the impact spread all over the large area of the child’s back, neck and head, hence reducing huge strain onto the child’s neck. On the other hand, this type of seat is quite convenient where it can be easily removed from the car because of its smaller size.
2) Forward-facing Car Seat
When the baby has already outgrown the weight (0-13kg) and height limit for rear-facing car seat, it’s time for parents to convert it into a forward-facing car seat with harness. Children can start sitting facing forward as long as his/her size meets the safety standards set by the manufacturer. Normally, an averaged sized child of 2 to 4 years old will sit in this type of car seat.
3) Booster Seat
Booster seat’s design is just like an adult seat. It helps to increase your child’s height so that your vehicle’s lap and shoulder belts can restrain he/she safely. When the child reaches the age of 5 or the height of 100 cm, it is the right time to switch to a booster seat. For Perodua Gear up toddler car seat, it can be a booster seat too. Just remove the first layer of cushion. When he/she exceeds 150 cm which is around 8 years old, parents can remove the back of seat.
4) Seat Belt
Finally, when your child fits the vehicle seat without the need of booster seat, he/she can sit like adults. However, parents still need to give extra care and make sure that the lap belt lays across the upper thighs (not the stomach) and the shoulder belt lays across the chest (not the neck). It’s useful to teach your child how to wear the seat belt properly too.
In conclusion, parents need to cultivate the safety needs of their child sitting in a child car seat since he/she is born. If you have children but have not got child car seats for them yet, it is best to buy them one each as soon as possible. As the saying goes, “Better late than never, better safe than sorry“.
Here’s a video of how to install baby car seat in your car. Contact us if you’d like to buy one for your beloved baby.