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Vote on Rear Facing Car Seats

(112 Posts)
VickyFord Fri 23-Sep-11 20:38:36

Advice sought please. Next week in the European Parliament there is a vote on whether children up to age 3 should have to travel in rear facing car seats. I have a vote. Apparently evidence from Sweden (where they are compulsory) is that these seats are safer if there is an accident. Also being told that studies in UK and US show same... but I think my kids would have kicked up such a fuss that we would have been more likely to have had an accident in the first place. However my youngest is now 10 so I’m probably miles out of date. Views from those with under 3s welcome. Have you read research? do you own a rear facing seat? what do your 2 year olds think?

p.s. I also think the EU shouldn’t be passing rules on car seats, surely we could decide this closer to home, but that is another matter altogether.

thisisyesterday Fri 23-Sep-11 20:42:10

i would love if this came into force

my children rear-face at 4 and 2 and we have no problem with it at all. neither kick up a fuss about going in their seats

mercibucket Fri 23-Sep-11 20:45:08

why isn't this something that the EU should rule on? seems entirely reasonable to me.
yep, would be a good rule to pass. we kept ours rear facing as long as possible without forking out for a proper rear facing seat imported from sweden. would be much better if they were cheap and easily available. kids would not complain, no more than they do about having to sit in a seat at all

silverfrog Fri 23-Sep-11 20:52:06

I don't understand why everyone thinks a toddler will kick up a fuss in a RF seat - it would be all they have ever known. no one says about babies "oh, but they all kick up such a fuss in RF seats" - and with group 0+ a baby can be in a standard RF seat up to 13kg, which even for my ridiculously large dd1 was about 11 months...

anyway. I would love it if this came in. my 4.7 year old is still in a RF seat, and she has no problem with it whatsoever. she will remain RF as long as I can get awa y with it (am anticipating comments form classmates soon unfortunately. but that will probably not make me change my mind, tbh)

dd1 was RF until she was 3. I wish I could have kept her RF longer, but couldn't as she kept getting her feet stuck when I lifted her out, and twisting her knee (she has severe ASD. she could not work out what to do with her (frankly enormous) feet, and kept wedging them in the gap.) and as I said above, dd2 is still RF at 4.7 (she is a tiny little thing - only just 15kg anyway, so would not want to put her in a HBB just yet in any event)

greensnail Fri 23-Sep-11 20:52:43

My two year old loves rear facing. She has a much better view out of the rear window than she would get forward facing so she can wave at the cars behind us. I would definitely vote yes. Not enough people know about extended rear facing seats and they are much too expensive at the moment as demand is so low. Everyone who sees dd in her seat comments on what a great seat it is and that is before they even know about the safety benefits of rear facing.

etyksm Fri 23-Sep-11 20:54:51

We have a rear facing car seat for our 2 year old, he has never been forward facing (except when getting lifts in other peoples cars) and has never complained about being rear facing.

My main concern is that there isn't the publicity in this country to provide parents which the choice, most people don't know they exist or of the research behind them. More shops need to stock them to make them available.

As to whether it should be law or not, I guess it comes under the same sort of arguments as the compulsory seat belts in cars, and compulsory booster seats for children in general. I guess whatever rationale was applied to make these laws, similar rationale / tests could be applied to this as well.

MagicFingerGoesPop Fri 23-Sep-11 21:05:23

Will there be a time period in which to switch them? I imagine enough are not currently manufactured to meet the expected demand, leading to significant delays in installation by parents. Additionally, if a parent has just paid out £££ for a top of the range seat for their child that will not take them to age three, then this might have a financial impact on that family. Ditto for people who simply cannot afford to pay for another car seat right now.

The administration and implementation, not to mention the enforcement if this becomes law is going to be a nightmare.

All that aside, I do think that it is a good idea to be considered.

VickyFord Fri 23-Sep-11 21:06:46

Thanks for this - very glad I asked and good to hear that there is so much positive feedback about them. Has anyone tried turning round a toddler who was used to facing front? When booster seats were made compulsory for older children all the shops sold out immediately, so it was impossible to "comply" with the law, they were also stupidly expensive - partly I suspect because all the EU was trying to get them at the same time. Now its not a problem.

thisisyesterday Fri 23-Sep-11 21:12:19

ds2 turned from forward to rearfacing at 2yrs

he thought it was great fun!

VickyFord Fri 23-Sep-11 21:14:56

ps I mean supply of booster seats no longer a problem I believe. Agree with MagicFingerGoesPop that could be a big cost for parents affected by any changeover and potential production/implementation nightmare.

VickyFord Fri 23-Sep-11 21:17:31

Thanks glad to hear ds2 happy.

WibblyBibble Sat 24-Sep-11 16:32:16

My 2-year-old hates rearfacing seats. She doesn't especially like car travel at all, in fact, and I don't have a car so the only time she goes in one is with my mum or friends. There is no way I could afford to buy a new seat at this point, so she would just have to never go in anyone's car if they bring in legislation. I've also never seen rearfacing seats on sale anywhere for children over 13kg in the UK, so, er, how are they going to do this immediately? I also think that legislating for maximum safety is fucking stupid. Toddlers are hugely at risk from kettles but the EU isn't trying to ban kettles from the homes of parents, is it? Everything carries some risk and it'd be ridiculous to bring in laws governing every aspect of human life. If you have a car accident, there's already a huge chance that someone will be injured or die, plus the risk to children from car use at all because of climate change within their lifetime, asthma increases, etc. Statistically I'd think that the effect of rear-facing car seats compared to other causes of injury in the under-3 population would indicate this legislation was useless, but I don't have time to look up published data now. Frankly I think that if people are going to invoke 'parental choice' about things like breastfeeding (which does have an effect on life outcome), what age children can be left home alone, what age children can cross roads, etc, then it's idiotic to legislate over other aspects of parenting which have no greater effect on life, in terms of probabilities.

GwendolineMaryLacey Sat 24-Sep-11 16:35:39

Er, my baby did kick up a fuss about being in her rf car seat. From the second she was put into it to the second she was taken out she screamed blue murder and was sick, every single time. We just had to get on with it but she hated it. As soon as she was put into a ff seat at 14 months or whatever she was, she was a changed child. I get horrendously travel sick, it's not out of the realms of possibility to suppose she did too.

thisisyesterday Sat 24-Sep-11 17:00:58

have you looked then wibbly?
quite a lot of places sell rear-facing seats now including John Lewis and Mothercare...

quite frankly i would rather my child cried in their seat than was internally decapitated.

TheSkiingGardener Sat 24-Sep-11 17:03:55

My 15 month old DS loves his RF carseat. We got it at Halfords, they are out there quite easily if you ask.

I think there should be an education programme, most people just don't realise it's even an option, let alone how much safer they are.

pozzled Sat 24-Sep-11 17:08:04

I wish this was the law. I have just turned DD1 forward facing around her 3rd birthday. Ideally I would want to keep her rf for longer, but when we bought her current car seat we couldn't easily find something that was rf past 13kg. I know you can get them in the UK, but as far as I could tell they are more expensive and not many places do them. If it was the law I guess shops would have to stock them.

Staverton Sat 24-Sep-11 17:19:55

My 4 and 2 year olds are in RF seats. (from in car safety centre in MK). They are 5 x safer in an accident. There was a great article recently in the BMJ about them.
My 4 yr old loves his. We are away at the moment and he is in a high back booster which he hates as it isn't as comfy. I am horrified at how easy it is for him to get out of it and am so glad we have our RF two way elite.
It worries me that babies are being turned forward facing as young as 6 months and how it is viewed almost as a developmental stage to reach.

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 24-Sep-11 18:45:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

barnowl Sat 24-Sep-11 19:47:01

This may seem a silly question but where do they put their feet?

notsofastmrbond Sat 24-Sep-11 19:51:38

These threads always start to go tits up when someone who puts their child in a ff comes on and gets all aggressive about it and starts talking about how it's nonsense to make car travel as safe as possible.

Oh, I see that's already happened.

OP, I think it's a good idea.

thisisyesterday Sat 24-Sep-11 21:39:51

barnowl, there is a (small) pic on my profile of my lot.. they have leg space smile

BoosMaw Sat 24-Sep-11 21:46:50

We have two children and two cars, in one car both kids are forward facing, in the other car one goes forward and one rear facing. They don't mind chopping and changing. I have the Klippan Kiss rearfacing seat, my oldest is 5 years old and still fits in it, my youngest is 20 months old so it's normally him who sits in the rearfacing one.

If I'm out in the car with only my 5yo, she always asks to sit in little bro's rearfacing seat, though I think it's just for the novelty of it. They get quite a good view out the back. Just today DS was having fun waving at the van driver behind, and got grumpy when we outpaced him, then cheered up again when the van caught us up. I only bought the RF seat because my toddler is HUGE, he outgrew his baby stage 0 seat when he was about 5 or 6 months old, he could barely sit, so I bought this extended RF seat for him. Elder DD went forward facing at approx 11 months old, I hadn't heard of extended RF seats when she was that age.

A downside is that they're bulkier, the front passenger gets less leg room. The driver can't see so well what the child is up to, though I believe some people use mirrors.

littleducks Sat 24-Sep-11 22:04:25

I'm really not sure if it would be a good idea. The law currently says that babies have to be in carseats but I see lots still being carried around on laps. I am not sure if increasing the requirements would help,I think I would prefer to see the police targeting those who don't use one at all...I don't think that children who are in seats are in seats are ever checked to see if it is the correct type of seat at the moment.

People are safer rear facing, but it does make you more prone to travel sickness.

Regarding the details I think there would be a very long switch over period, it would be really unfair to force people to buy new seats when they have just bought one.

GwendolineMaryLacey Sat 24-Sep-11 23:00:28

Where has the thread gone tits up notsofastmrbond? One poster has questioned the reasoning and I replied to someone who said that no one ever complains that their baby hates rearfacing. In fact, the OP herself said her children wouldn't have liked it. So by your reckoning, the thread went tits up from the word go then?

I think the only one being aggressive was you.

silverfrog Sat 24-Sep-11 23:25:12

um, actually what I said was that there is no blanket assumption that all babies will hate RF, as there seems to be when it comes to toddlers - this comes up time and again whenever RF toddler seats are mentioned.

I did not say that no one has said their baby hates RF. it stands to reason that some do. but I find it odd that it is something that is brought up wrt RF toddler seats, when there is no global statement made about babies in the same way. that is all.

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