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Rear facing car-seats safer for children under 4 years old

(54 Posts)
DarrellRivers Sat 20-Jun-09 09:48:43

I read this in the BMJ this morning

in the section to change your practice

I had only read about this on mumsnet before, and will be interested to see how far it gets reported in the mainstream press

Will you be changing your seats?
My youngest is 4 [phew]

DarrellRivers Sat 20-Jun-09 09:50:47

Elizabeth Johnson, are you a mumsnetter?

DarrellRivers Sat 20-Jun-09 09:53:09

Elizabeth Watson perhaps?

spinspinsugar Sat 20-Jun-09 10:02:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

catski Sat 20-Jun-09 12:06:00

My rear facing car seat is suitable for kids up to 25kg.

BCLass Sat 20-Jun-09 12:13:27

It was on BBC breakfast & BBC website a week last Friday, so my MIL informs me.

Upwind Sat 20-Jun-09 21:26:10

Wouldn't it be safer for everyone in the car to face backwards?

spinspinsugar Sun 21-Jun-09 01:15:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DarrellRivers Sun 21-Jun-09 08:36:45

v true upwind
the thought made me chuckle though, what about the driver?

catski Sun 21-Jun-09 11:42:24

It's the maxi-cosi Mobi spinspinsugar. It's for the weight range 9-25kg. I'm not sure how readily available it is in the UK but I know there are a couple of online swedish shops who will deliver to the UK. You can probably find out if there's any retailers in the UK at www.rearfacing.co.uk (under the Buyer's Guide).

Obviously it will be cheaper for you if you can find it in the UK - not only do you not have to pay for delivery, but the pound is pretty weak against the euro and the swedish krona at the moment so that also bumps the price up.

It really would be great if these seats were more readily available in the UK - prices would really come down.

Upwind - we've been talking about this on another thread. Yes, rearfacing travel is safer for everyone. In fact, the best thing would be if we all started driving backwards wink. However, it's especially important for young children. At this age, their heads are out of proportion to their bodies (compared with an adult) - their head is about 25% of their total body weight. Because of this, in a crash, what might be moderate whiplash for an adult could be a far more severe injury for a young child.
There's more info about that here:
http://www.rearfacing.co.uk/facts.php#small

spinspinsugar Sun 21-Jun-09 12:29:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

catski Sun 21-Jun-09 13:12:47

That's great, I hope you can get hold of it. Don't mix it up with the Tobi. Well, you won't I guess as the Tobi is forward facing and the Mobi is rear facing!

PerfectPrefect Sun 21-Jun-09 13:21:39

I very much doubt elizabeth is a MNetter. She is a researcher.

You say that you have only read about this on MN - it is common knowledge in many other countries - especially scandinavia - whcih will have inspired her research.

HeinzSight Sun 21-Jun-09 13:30:41

My DD (22 months) is in a rear facing car seat. I felt it was indeed safer for her until the age of 4.

I was fortunate to live near an in car safety centre. There aren't that many of these in the country. sad

They were able to assess what seat would be most suitable for my car. Rear facing car seats tend to be MASSIVE, so you need a fairly big car to accomodate them. I've got a Britax one for my DD.

EldonAve Sun 21-Jun-09 13:47:00

We already have a rearfacing seat but we've switched back to forwardfacing now DD is 2

catski Sun 21-Jun-09 14:14:35

Why have you switched her to forward facing Eldon? They're still more at risk for spinal and neck injuries at that age if forward facing. I wouldn't switch to forward facing until they were at least 4 (which is in line with all the scandinavian safety test reports and the recent BMJ one referred to in the OP).

Yes, some of the car seats do look a bit mahoosive Heinz. I think the one I have (Mobi) is one of the biggest on the market, but you'd be surprised - it still fit in my peugot 207 which is quite a small car. I posted this on the other thread, but have a look here, there's a pic of it in my peugeot
http://www.flickr.com/photos/25974702@N08/sets/72157606144845712/

That's my boy when he was 15 months old. He's a bit bigger now of course (26 months). I should add on a couple of recent photos of him in it.

I think the Brio Zento is supposed to be one of the smallest ones on the market.

EldonAve Sun 21-Jun-09 16:08:15

We have switched because it was becoming a pain to get her into the seat (our back seats are v upright) and you had to tether the seat to the passenger seat in front

sonicxtra Sun 21-Jun-09 17:14:43

I'm sorry but where do the children's legs go? Surely at that age there is no space with a rear facing seat? Or am I just being dim?

EldonAve Sun 21-Jun-09 17:22:39

From what I have seen in Sweden people usually use the front passenger seat and you can then recline the seat back to give more space

HeinzSight Sun 21-Jun-09 17:32:04

That's pretty impressive catski!! Only prob I guess is the front passenger seat is very upright. Ours is too somewhat despite being a Renault Grand Scenic!

sonicxtra, their legs do 'scrunch' up, but it's still safer in this position than forward facing.

catski Sun 21-Jun-09 17:43:07

Sonicxtra - that's a question lots of people ask. If you look at the photos I linked to you'll see that a group 1 rear facing seat sits further back, and higher up, than a group 1 infant carrier type rear facing seat. There is more room for their legs. Plus, the children bend their legs! Unlike adults, kids are more flexible and don't find it uncomfortable sitting with knees bent or legs crossed. Have a look here at a six year old in a rf seat.

kidsincars.blogspot.com/2007/09/bent-or-crossed-legs-are-not-dangerous.html

Eldon - at 26 months, I currently lift my son in and out of his seat. I'm assuming as he gets older and taller that he'll climb in and out himself as I see the other 4 and 5 year olds do around here (I'm in sweden where rear facing seats are standard). I suppose I see a bit of inconvenience getting him in and out as a very minor disadvantage compared to the safety benefits of a rear facing seat for children at that age.

DarrellRivers Sun 21-Jun-09 19:22:35

PP, I don't see why you 'very much doubt Elizabeth Watson in a mumsnetter' ? hmm
She is a GP retainer which is a working GP who works less than fulltime, often with more child friendly hours in order to continue her career in general practice.
So it is not unlikely that she has a young family and may well be reading mumsnet.
And even if she was an academic, she again may well have young children and hence an interest in this subject.
I am fairly well read and this is the first time I have ever read about this anywhere else apart from on mumsnet, where I have been reading about it for several years.

EldonAve Sun 21-Jun-09 21:28:23

catski - I don't doubt rear facing seats are safer but the hassle outweighs it for me
Esp with a bad back and only driving about every 8 weeks

catski Mon 22-Jun-09 08:10:07

Well, I can't pretend to agree with your reasoning but will leave it there and wish you all the best for happy and accident-free travels smile

Upwind Mon 22-Jun-09 09:28:37

"...only driving about every 8 weeks "

Your DC are at lower risk then, I suspect, than if you drove them daily in the world's safest car seat.

I also rarely drive and would need a bigger car for rear facing car seats. I have no intention of buying one! If we either start driving regularly, or get rich, I will.

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