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Car seat usage confusion(answers from older parents please)


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When I had my older children, there were specific instructions out the to not use the boosters in the cars. I even remember watching a show where they showed how the booster could come out from under the child in the event of an accident leaving them with the seat belt way too loose.

 

Now, I also have younger children. When they first implimented suggestion (and in some states, laws) that car seats be used longer, well in to the booster stage, I was my obediant self and did not question it. But after a series of laws past for our childrens supposed own goods (aka mandatory guardasil vaccinations for all 11 yr old girls) I started to question what laws have been past because a manufacturer wanted to sell more, and what laws actually are for our own good (if any).

 

I see all these videos on You Tube of children in car accidents dying from using boosters. These videos have been used to support the use of longer used 5 point belt systems. But I have really wondered if these children would have been safer in their own adult belts. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=azgBhZfcqaQ

The car seat in the above video is the exact one my 6, almost 7 yr old uses and my 4 yr old is supposed to move in to when he grows out of his 5 point system.

 

Here is another one....

 

 

Please do not slam me for asking this question. I just want to know from older parents who were on the generation where we were told a big no to boosters (I read all the parenting magazines back then) if they have any clarification to why the rules and suggestions have changed and the opinions of those who have older children (as in, teens and older).

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I am not an 'older mother' that you are requesting but I don't like the looks of the you tube videos and we chose a long time ago not to use the boosters. lately I was rethinking but rewatching the videos cements in my mind sticking to my huge Regent with 5 point harness to 80 pounds. We are car seat picky and have had friends criticize us for leaving our kids in 5 point harness so long but I hope I never have to say I told you so to them....

 

You are right, the boosters aren't as safe. We love our Regent and it doesn't look all that bad for a car seat...it's pretty low profile IMHO.

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With my older two we went from 5pt harness to adult belt, but with my younger two (decent age gap between the sets of olders/youngers) I am on the fence. My 6yo dd has outgrown her 5pt system and we have a booster, but I've been hesitant to use it. I have a few years before I need to worry about littlest though, she's only 14mths.

 

Not a lot of advice, but just wanted you to know I relate.

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I see all these videos on You Tube of children in car accidents dying from using boosters. These videos have been used to support the use of longer used 5 point belt systems. But I have really wondered if these children would have been safer in their own adult belts. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=azgBhZfcqaQ

The car seat in the above video is the exact one my 6, almost 7 yr old uses and my 4 yr old is supposed to move in to when he grows out of his 5 point system.

 

no. An adult belt would have no impact here - it was the SEAT BELT LATCH that failed, NOT the seat. Something caused the belt to come unlatched, allowing the seat to come loose.

 

Did you see the crash etst video towards the end? That shows what happens when a child in an adult seat belt puts the shoulder part behind their back because it bugs them.

 

Lap belts only should NEVER have been allowed to be put in cars - i took my Tech class from the lady that fought for all your kids in Congress to NOT allow lap belts "way back then". She and others wanted shoulder belts in back seats back then......

 

A child is safest in the 5-pt seat, using LATCH anchors and a tether strap reduces the chance of seat belt failure and ejection. A child in a "belt positioning booster" seat until they fit the belt in their seating position is safer than one in just a belt. Because of what you see in that video at the end.

 

The risk of seat belt failure is something we all face sadly..... and gee, there is no way to know until the time that it happens.

 

Now, put your kid in an adult seat belt if all you have is a shield booster seat (you wanna whack your head on a piece of hard plastic???) or an overhead shield car seat.......

 

Just sign me the former CPS Tech (darn ACL blow out :glare:)

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As a former certified child passenger safety technician, I have seen all sorts of crash tests and learned some crash dynamics.

 

In the first video you linked, it was not the fault of the booster seat. It says that the seat belt failed so you would pretty much have a problem regardless. Even a 5 pt harness carseat would go flying unless secured with the LATCH system to the seat rather than relying on the seatbelt.

 

In the second video, it states that the child was too small for the booster seat. So, that fatality was not because the booster failed but because the parents did not use the right seat for the size of their child.

 

There was a time when booster seats were a bar that went over the child. These booster seats were not safe as the belt wasn't snug against the child, it just held in the booster. With these seats, a child could fly out of the booster. They no longer make this type of booster seat.

 

I have a 10ds who still rides in a booster seat and will until he is big enough to fit properly in the vehicle seat and the seatbelt. What many people don't realize is that the booster and even a regular seatbelt must be used properly to provide maximum protection. The seatbelt should be snug across the hips and the shoulder harness should come across the shoulder. If the lap portion is not snug, a child (or adult) could slide out of the seatbelt with or without a booster. If the lap portion is across the abdomen, which is what often happens if a smaller child is not using a booster, spinal cord injury or death could occur as the seatbelt will cut through the soft tissue of the abdomen and not stop until it hits the spine. If the shoulder belt portion is behind the back or under the arm instead of across the shoulder, well all sorts of nasty things could happen.

 

You should use a 5pt harness as long as your child will fit in one. Depending on the seat, it could eliminate the need for a booster. But if your child outgrows the 5pt harness before he/she is big enough to use an adult seatbelt, a booster is the next step. There is no rush to move a child up to less protection.

 

Here is a great website including the 5-step booster test - http://www.carseat.org/

 

Sorry if this got long, but it's something I'm rather passionate about. I flew out of a car when I was a baby and was fortunate enough to survive.

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I've done A LOT of research on carseats and boosters. One thing to remember is that a lot has changed in regards to safety in the past few years. Just because something was true 5 or 10 years ago, doesn't make it true now. You've always done the best for your children with the knowledge you had.

 

Think of carseat/booster options as steps of safety.

1. Rear-facing 5-pt harness

2. Forward-facing 5-pt harness

3. Booster seat

4. Adult seatbelt

5. Sitting in the front seat

 

Every time you move to a new stage you are sacrificing safety. For example, adults are safer in the backseat than in the frontseat. A properly used harness is always safer than a booster, but a properly used booster is safer than a seatbelt alone. However, the growth of our children and maximum limits of the seats necessitate transitioning to the new stages.

 

Therefore, you should use a booster when your children are old enough and big enough. Those videos you referenced are showing that boosters are not the best option for a 4 yr old. In fact, the research I've read shows that boosters are better saved until 6 and over. There are now harness seats that accomodate older children up to 80 lbs.

 

I have some good video links of dummys in boosters vs. adult seatbelts. I will post them as soon as I find them.

 

HTH and isn't too confusing,

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I don't know about the second video but the first video should actually be a warning about vans, SUVs and other vehicles with high chances of rollover. I used the carseat until they were too tall for it. (All three were too tall before they were too heavy). I am not sure why these people's seatbelts got unbuckled. In various crashes with various cars we have had, none have ever gotten unbuckled. We have also never had a rollover. I did have a van for five years but decided they weren't that safe and went to having station wagons. I had station wagons with third seats. I now have a Sedan since I only have four people normally at home.

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Seat belts are designed for people 5 feet tall and 100 lbs. Anyone smaller than that is not properly restrained by the belt in the event of an accident. In particular, the placement of the shoulder belt can be lethal on a smaller person. The force of the belt on the artery in the neck can cause the artery to rupture in an accident if the belt is not at the proper placement. The booster puts the belt in the proper position on the body of a person under 5 feet and 100 lbs.

 

A 5 pt harness is the safest. If the government wanted to get super safety concious on us, they would require all autos have 5 pt seat belts, but we all know that is not going to happen. Putting a child in a booster too early (before he is of the right size and before he is able to sit properly without wiggling out of the belt, bending over all the time, etc.) puts the child at greater risk for injury in an accident. So many people jump at the chance to put away the 5 pt because the perceive that the booster is easier and faster, yet they are putting their children at risk.

 

My girls outgrew their first 5 pt seats just before they turned 4. There was no way I felt comfortable putting them in a booster. I knew they could not sit without wriggling around and I knew that they were safer in a 5 pt. So, I bought a 5 pt seat that went to 65 lbs (although we always outgrow in height before weight). This Spring (at almost 7), they outgrew those seats. While I was not thrilled about the step down in safety going to a booster, I knew they could sit properly in them. Well, after a couple of weeks in the boosters, my girls said they wanted harnesses again. So, we bought the Britax Frontier, which converts to a booster after the harness is outgrown.

 

Honestly, I don't think that it is a consipiracy to sell more seats. The knowledge with regards to safety has expanded, the technology with regards to the car seats and boosters has gotten much better, and the number of accidents has increased. All that considered, I do what I feel is right for MY family and not what the government says and not what my friends are doing (only one is using extended harnessing).

 

I hope that helps.

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As a former certified child passenger safety technician, I have seen all sorts of crash tests and learned some crash dynamics.

 

 

I have a 10ds who still rides in a booster seat and will until he is big enough to fit properly in the vehicle seat and the seatbelt. What many people don't realize is that the booster and even a regular seatbelt must be used properly to provide maximum protection. The seatbelt should be snug across the hips and the shoulder harness should come across the shoulder. If the lap portion is not snug, a child (or adult) could slide out of the seatbelt with or without a booster. If the lap portion is across the abdomen, which is what often happens if a smaller child is not using a booster, spinal cord injury or death could occur as the seatbelt will cut through the soft tissue of the abdomen and not stop until it hits the spine. If the shoulder belt portion is behind the back or under the arm instead of across the shoulder, well all sorts of nasty things could happen.

 

Thanks for this website and this information in your post. What is your ds's height and weight? And does he have a booster with the back on it? My ds is 8...weighs 65 pounds and is about 54 inches tall. He still uses the booster with the back. It is a removable back. Is it ok for him to continue to use it with the back? I thought I read somewhere that when his head gets above the top of the back it should be removed...he is just about even now, maybe a tad above the back...but it is so nice for trips when he goes to sleep!

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Thanks for this website and this information in your post. What is your ds's height and weight? And does he have a booster with the back on it? My ds is 8...weighs 65 pounds and is about 54 inches tall. He still uses the booster with the back. It is a removable back. Is it ok for him to continue to use it with the back? I thought I read somewhere that when his head gets above the top of the back it should be removed...he is just about even now, maybe a tad above the back...but it is so nice for trips when he goes to sleep!

 

He can use the back as long as the tips of his ears are level with the plastic shell (same for regular FF seats), rear facing you need to have an inch or more above the head. I have my DD in a backless right now, just because of the logistics in the van. I wish Britax was still making the Star Riser - i need a new narrow seat!

 

I did all my training with Safety Belt Safe that was linked, what a WONDERFUL set of people to work with/for. I miss being out in CA and having access to their checks.

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Thanks for this website and this information in your post. What is your ds's height and weight? And does he have a booster with the back on it? My ds is 8...weighs 65 pounds and is about 54 inches tall. He still uses the booster with the back. It is a removable back. Is it ok for him to continue to use it with the back? I thought I read somewhere that when his head gets above the top of the back it should be removed...he is just about even now, maybe a tad above the back...but it is so nice for trips when he goes to sleep!

 

What Tracey said. As long as the top of the ears aren't above the top of the seat. In the same vein, if your vehicle doesn't have headrests, you should use a booster with a back.

 

My 10ds is about the same size as yours. We have a backless booster because that's what he prefers - it looks less like a carseat than one with a back.

 

Great job keeping him in a booster this long!

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snip

In the first video you linked, it was not the fault of the booster seat. It says that the seat belt failed so you would pretty much have a problem regardless. Even a 5 pt harness carseat would go flying unless secured with the LATCH system to the seat rather than relying on the seatbelt.

snip

 

 

A small correction on this part. I've seen the video from this before (I already had a regent when I saw it, but it did convince DH that we were smart to get the seats), and the parents advocate 5 point harnesses (and the Regent in particular) because you can use either the belt or the latch and have the additional protection of the tether. The tether should hold the seat in place even if the latch or seat belt fails. They are saying that a Regent is inherently better than a booster because the Regent offers the extra protection of having a tether. Smaller bodies need greater protection, and bigger kids can do their own seat belts, when it is appropriate, to ensure that they are properly latched.

 

Missy

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I'm 50...is that old enough? :tongue_smilie:

 

When our son was about to out-grow his second stage car-seat, we looked at the boosters and I was shocked at how unsafe they are. If the seat-bet gives the kids will go flying, and even if the seat-beat stays intact, a kid can "wiggle-worm" out of it, or end up with the belt around his or her neck.

 

We found an outstanding (and expensive) alternative in the "Radian 80". It is steel-framed, uses LATCH AND a rear tether, it's narrow enough to fit 3 seats across (unlike most), and converts all the way from a rear-facing first-stage infant car seat to 80 lbs, so the high cost is mitigated by not needing 3 different seats.

 

My wife was rear-ended by a big truck a couple weeks back, and boy was I happy we "bit the bullet" and got a safe seat. I dread to think what might have happened if my son had been in a booster.

 

As it is all are well :001_smile:

 

Bill

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We bit the bullet and bought the Frontiers ($280 a piece and we needed 2) instead of Monarch boosters (we are Britax fans). We figured that if we are in an accident and our girls were safe we wouldn't care about the extra $300 we spent. However, if we went with the boosters and something did happen we would not be able to live with ourselves for compromising their safety over a few hundred dollars.

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I think the problem from long ago with boosters were the ones with a shield and just a lap belt for the child. Now, boosters are designed to be used with a lap/shoulder belt combination. That affords the child much more protection.

 

I do agree through with keeping the kids in 5pt. seats as long as possible---my girls were in them until they turned 6. Now at 12 and 11 they still ride in booster seats about 95% of the time.

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My wife was rear-ended by a big truck a couple weeks back, and boy was I happy we "bit the bullet" and got a safe seat. I dread to think what might have happened if my son had been in a booster.

 

As it is all are well :001_smile:

 

 

Glad to hear all is well - and you replaced that seat right????? :D

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Glad to hear all is well - and you replaced that seat right????? :D

 

Yes, glad they were fine.

 

And good point Tracey. Before getting trained, I didn't know that if a carseat has been in a crash that it needs to be replace because the forces of the crash can greatly compromise the seat.

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Glad to hear all is well - and you replaced that seat right????? :D

 

 

Well...the insurance company called today and they going to pay for a new seat. Unlike an ordinary "plastic car-seat" (which I would have replaced immediately) I very highly doubt this steel framed seat sustained any damage (although I'm not a metallurgist). Unless you've seen a Radian 80 steel frame it's hard to comprehend how strongly these are made.

 

Honestly, had the insurance company not brought it up, the thought never would have crossed my mind. And not because I'm lax, or not safety conscious, but because I'm pretty convinced there's not a thing wrong with the seat.

 

So we will replace the seat, but what to do with the old one?

 

I know I'd rather have my child in the "used" Radian 80, that in a brand-new booster (huge understatement) or virtually any other car seat. I know "re-using" an ordinary seat that's been in a crash is a big no-no (and for good reason). Any other seat I'd dispose of without a moments hesitation, even though the accident was not that severe. But these seats are literally built like tanks.

 

We have plenty of friends with kids in boosters who I'm quite certain would be far far safer if we gave them our old seat. So I'm plagued. What to do?

 

Junking what I'm convinced is a perfectly safe seat troubles me, but I just haven't worked out fully what's the right thing to do.

 

Bill

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The type booster seat I bought and used with both my boys was made more like a full car seat and strapped in through back openings using the car's seatbelt, then had it's own five point harness system. It just sat more upright and allowed them to sit in the seat more like an adult, rather than reclining at least a little, like most car seats.

 

I think there's some confusion about what's being called a booster seat nowdays. I know they used to have out those little seats that were just bottoms that would make a child taller, enabling them to use the car's seat belt. I believe those are dangerous. I don't know if they still make those, or not.

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So we will replace the seat, but what to do with the old one?

Call the company and ask them what they recommend. THey are probably going to say "destroy it" from the liability side. If you do decide to reuse it, please consider replacing the harness and the LATCH straps if you were using them (and a tether if it has one). Like seatbelts, those often have one "Stretch" in them. So while the frame is likely fine, the straps may or may not be - and that would be something i'd like no parent to find out the hard way.

 

Radian 80 (narrow) (safe) (virtually indestructible)

 

Bill (who does not have stock in the company)

Its for my older child - i have to ponder getting her back into a 5 point. There are a number of varied issues related to that that are too long to go into here right now. 1 of which i'd need 3.

 

BUT, tell me this - how upright is the seat? I need something to go in the center back of a extra cab truck. My Britax's (wizard & marathon) are too tall and angled to much to make me like it much (ok, not at all - i had no choice on Sunday and I was stressing big time). THey hit the window. DD uses the Fisher Price Futura in there right now, which goes to 60# with the lapbelt only, but she complains about the cushioning (or lack of it). She doesn't ride in the truck that often, so i just keep ignoring her complaints.

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Call the company and ask them what they recommend. THey are probably going to say "destroy it" from the liability side.

 

Yes, I think it is a virtual certainly they would have to say destroy it due to "liability" issues.

 

If you do decide to reuse it, please consider replacing the harness and the LATCH straps if you were using them (and a tether if it has one). Like seatbelts, those often have one "Stretch" in them. So while the frame is likely fine, the straps may or may not be - and that would be something i'd like no parent to find out the hard way.

 

An outstanding point! And one I frankly had not thought of [and I hate ending a sentence in a preposition on a "classical" education forum].

 

Its for my older child - i have to ponder getting her back into a 5 point.

 

We [my wife and I] had this discussion when we bought this seat. I warned "he may revolt" when he turns 5 and he sees the other kids in "big-boy" boosters. He turns 4 on Friday, and loves his seat now. And we try to re-enforce the message of what a great seat he has with a eye to the future. While we are fairly "wide" in trying to allow a reasonable amount of "autonomy" in his decisions, on this issue WE ARE THE PARENTS, and we will decide.

 

There are a number of varied issues related to that that are too long to go into here right now. 1 of which i'd need 3.

 

OUCH! That's about $750, more-or-less.

 

BUT, tell me this - how upright is the seat? I need something to go in the center back of a extra cab truck. My Britax's (wizard & marathon) are too tall and angled to much to make me like it much (ok, not at all - i had no choice on Sunday and I was stressing big time).

 

Pretty much bolt upright. Very compact compared with the Britax. Unlike the Britax (which are pretty much giant-sized plastic car seats) the Radian has an internal steel-frame. It is "heavy" but very streamlined. 3 of these fit in a "normal" 3 person back seat (again unlike the Britax).

 

DD uses the Fisher Price Futura in there right now, which goes to 60# with the lapbelt only, but she complains about the cushioning (or lack of it). She doesn't ride in the truck that often, so i just keep ignoring her complaints.

 

My wife was actually able to sit in the Radian 80 as was the shop-girl who sold it to us, they both gave it a thumbs up in terms of comfort. And my son loves his.

 

I'm convinced this is a great car seat. Not inexpensive unfortunately.

 

Good luck!

 

Bill

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I know they used to have out those little seats that were just bottoms that would make a child taller, enabling them to use the car's seat belt. I believe those are dangerous. I don't know if they still make those, or not.

These are still widely available.

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An outstanding point! And one I frankly had not thought of [and I hate ending a sentence in a preposition on a "classical" education forum].

Good save :D I had most excellent CPS Training buy those fine folks at Safety Belt Safe, i credit them i thought to mention it.

 

We [my wife and I] had this discussion when we bought this seat. I warned "he may revolt" when he turns 5 and he sees the other kids in "big-boy" boosters. He turns 4 on Friday, and loves his seat now. And we try to re-enforce the message of what a great seat he has with a eye to the future. While we are fairly "wide" in trying to allow a reasonable amount of "autonomy" in his decisions, on this issue WE ARE THE PARENTS, and we will decide.

The difference being the child i'm trying to get back into it is my 9yo with a growth disorder. And some funky processing issues that make it well, a huge challenge..... if i bought my newly 4yo (last saturday) the pink one she'd be fine with it. In fact, we had a tantrum a few months ago in the car seat aisle at Target over the PINK seat.

 

Oh the joys......... :lol:

 

OUCH! That's about $750, more-or-less.

Maybe i'll win lotto tonight?! If i got them for the 2 kids - i'd need 5. The 4yo could stay in the Britax in grandmas van.

 

Pretty much bolt upright. Very compact compared with the Britax. Unlike the Britax (which are pretty much giant-sized plastic car seats) the Radian has an internal steel-frame. It is "heavy" but very streamlined. 3 of these fit in a "normal" 3 person back seat (again unlike the Britax).

Thanks, that helps greatly. It looked upright, but i wasn't sure with that part that flips in regards to the angle changing. IT's now on my shopping list for at least DH's truck for the 4yo (well, maybe i'd keep her in the Futura and convince the 9yo to use it in there?).

 

My wife was actually able to sit in the Radian 80 as was the shop-girl who sold it to us, they both gave it a thumbs up in terms of comfort. And my son loves his.

Good to know - because i'm 99% sure my behind will NOT fit in it at the moment :D

 

I'm convinced this is a great car seat. Not inexpensive unfortunately.

HA. They never are...... i bought a Britax Freeway for DD (the 12yo) way back when, DH balked at the cost so we only had one.... he used that Century thing and complained the entire time about the twisty straps and what junk it was... and has NEVER complained again about seat costs ;)

 

Now, how to get my van to turn into a Civic hybrid so i have to buy the seat to fit the kids in the back.......

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Actually both seats are "boosters". You used the harness until 40 pounds, then they either went in the adult seat, or you moved onto the next "level" of booster, technically called a "Belt Positioning Booster".

 

That is it's roll in life - to position the adult seat belt on a child, so that child stands a chance of surviving a crash because the seat belt was able to do it's job.

 

Something like this, is safe - and a much better choice than having a child in a seat belt before it fits them. This is what my 9yo rides in currently. We have headrests and she stays in position most of the time (:glare:)

41ZgZ3v79GL._AA280_.jpg

 

These seats - aren't, and NEVER were safe and should have been pulled long before they were.....

Cosco_Dorel_Grand_Explorer_22290.jpg

 

The type booster seat I bought and used with both my boys was made more like a full car seat and strapped in through back openings using the car's seatbelt, then had it's own five point harness system. It just sat more upright and allowed them to sit in the seat more like an adult, rather than reclining at least a little, like most car seats.

 

I think there's some confusion about what's being called a booster seat nowdays. I know they used to have out those little seats that were just bottoms that would make a child taller, enabling them to use the car's seat belt. I believe those are dangerous. I don't know if they still make those, or not.

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What Tracey said. As long as the top of the ears aren't above the top of the seat. In the same vein, if your vehicle doesn't have headrests, you should use a booster with a back.

 

My 10ds is about the same size as yours. We have a backless booster because that's what he prefers - it looks less like a carseat than one with a back.

 

Great job keeping him in a booster this long!

 

Thanks for the info! Very helpful. He likes the booster because it helps him see out better and he likes the back in case he goes to sleep. The neighbor kid tried to make fun of him, but ds just shrugged and said, 'I like it.' The next time I took the neighbor kid in my car he asked his mom for his booster.:glare:

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why the rules and suggestions have changed and the opinions of those who have older children (as in, teens and older).

 

IMO, the laws have changed because "they" (government? seat makers?) see it as their role to protect children as much as possible, and many parents do not see the point in keeping children in seats longer. For example -- when I was 2-3 years old, I was short enough to stand on the front seat of my dad's pickup truck. I preferred this because I could see out better. To "keep me safe", I had to stand next to my dad so I could hold on to him if we had to stop fast. Today, I'm pretty sure CFS would take away someone's kid for that!

 

I don't even think it is a generational issue, it seems to have changed in the last 5-7 years. Most (if not all) of my friends who have kids older than mine use backless boosters or nothing at all once their kids meet the legal requirement (which was age 3 when we lived in NC). All of my friends who have kids under 5 have their kids in 5-point harnesses, and plan to keep them there as long as possible.

 

Personally, I don't see that it is the government's responsibility to protect my children, it is *MY* responsibility to decide what will best protect my children. I disagree with making a LAW requiring seats until 8 years of age or 4 ft 9 inches (in my state, there is no exception for weight). The only benefit I guess is that it has brought more of an awareness to car safety issues.

 

I bet I have invested over 100 hours researching car seats over the years as our needs keep changing as our car size, boy size, and family size keep increasing. I have purchased ... brace yourself ... NINETEEN car seats in the last 7 years (OMG!!! don't tell DH!!! ha ha). My almost-7-yo will be in a car seat long after he turns 8, but I REALLY don't think that my much-larger 5 yo nephew needs to be in one. Two of my boys were turned forward facing before they were a year old, and one of my boys was still rear-facing at 2.5 years old. I don't want or need a law to dictate car seat usage, only *I* know my children well enough to know what car seat situation is best for each one!

 

On a side note, about Radians mentioned above... I recently purchased 3 Radian 65s, as the Radians are the ONLY car seats that will fit 3 across in the 3rd row of my Sienna (boosters won't even fit, I tried). I spoke to someone at the company, and the measurements of the Radian 65 & 80 are exactly the same. The 80 is made with a thicker steel frame (hence the 15 extra pound allowance), includes infant pillows, and offers more color options than the 65, but it also costs about $75 more. The LATCH attachment of the Radian is the same as the Britax (easy to use red button type), and the buckles look the same but are actually easier for my kids to do themselves because each one clicks individually, rather than having to do both at the same time. The Radian has little storage spots on the back for LATCH straps when not in use (REAL spots to hook on, not just a fabric pocket), but it does not have the plastic clip thing for the car's seat belt to be locked into like the Marathon & Boulevard do. The Radians do not sit up as high, so I can no longer see the faces of the side passengers in the 3rd row like I could in their Boulevards, but they can do their straps themselves so I'm happy with the trade-off. I realize at this point people have probably stopped reading, so I will stop there, but if anyone is interested in further comparisons, let me know. ha ha. We were using a Marathon, Parkway, Boulevard, Companion, Regent combination before switching to the Radians.

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Seat belts are designed for people 5 feet tall and 100 lbs. Anyone smaller than that is not properly restrained by the belt in the event of an accident. In particular, the placement of the shoulder belt can be lethal on a smaller person. The force of the belt on the artery in the neck can cause the artery to rupture in an accident if the belt is not at the proper placement. The booster puts the belt in the proper position on the body of a person under 5 feet and 100 lbs.

 

So, how many of you petite ladies (or gentlemen) use a 5-point harness for yourselves? I say I am 5', but I am actually 4'11". I am over 100 lbs, but before dc #4 was born, I was 98 lbs. I used a regular seat belt with an adjuster to keep the shoulder strap off my neck then (still do, actually). Our children have a good chance of all being 5' or smaller and petite in stature. Do I keep them in 5-point harnesses until they are no longer minors and can make their own choices? Do they make 5-point harnesses for adults?

 

This is something which I wonder from time to time how to handle and thought that this thread would be a good place to ask. (I'm not picking on Brigitte, btw; she just worded well what my concerns over restraint systems have been. :001_smile: )

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I'm car seat, booster seat crazed. I should've never been a nurse before I had children because it made me crazy. My children were happily in boosters until they outgrew them at 9. That was before the laws changed. They have been using mandatory boosters in Europe for a long time. I think you have to find the right fit for your child and car. Someone mentioned above the need for proper use of the seatbelt. I had a young woman friend visit me when her son was 4 and thank me for saving his life. I didn't know what she was talking about. She reminded me I showed her how to adjust her car seat and seat belts. She rolled her car on icy roads and the child and seat stayed in properly.:auto:

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This is a very valid concern - we talked about it at every class and check i ever attended. Their does need to be something for the adult that needs a boost to fit a car seat properly.

 

My own DD has a growth disorder - and their goal is to get her TO 5' so that she can function in the world the best. The world is designed for that - sorta as i'm sure you know.

 

The seatbelt adjusters aren't the greatest to use - they make you comfy for driving, but really cause the belt to be out of position during a crash. :( (often severely out of position)

 

I haven't heard of anything yet that will work, i know that the newer cars with the height adjustable seatbelts, steering wheels that go in and out and pedals that adjust should help. But not everyone can buy a new car.

 

The push has been to get kids safer - and that has lead to advancements in comfort for ALL sizes of people.

 

Just know that the CPS Community as a whole does know there is a need for "something" for small adults.

 

In the case of your small kids - you are going to have to balance size with maturity to stay seated in the belt correctly (the 5 step test at carseat.org will help with the guidelines). They may also have some suggestions as to what you can do to make yourself comfy and safe at the same time.

 

So, how many of you petite ladies (or gentlemen) use a 5-point harness for yourselves? I say I am 5', but I am actually 4'11". I am over 100 lbs, but before dc #4 was born, I was 98 lbs. I used a regular seat belt with an adjuster to keep the shoulder strap off my neck then (still do, actually). Our children have a good chance of all being 5' or smaller and petite in stature. Do I keep them in 5-point harnesses until they are no longer minors and can make their own choices? Do they make 5-point harnesses for adults?

 

This is something which I wonder from time to time how to handle and thought that this thread would be a good place to ask. (I'm not picking on Brigitte, btw; she just worded well what my concerns over restraint systems have been. :001_smile: )

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On a side note, about Radians mentioned above... I recently purchased 3 Radian 65s, as the Radians are the ONLY car seats that will fit 3 across in the 3rd row of my Sienna (boosters won't even fit, I tried).

 

Thanks, i have an Odyssey. I have to say though - a Britax Starriser/Comfy would have fit for a booster...... great for skinny kids when you needed a narrow seat. WE just plum wore the cover out - and i was going to order a new one and forgot, then couldn't find any.

 

I really want to try to figure out how to get a small gas efficient car, but the seats are an issue - hopefully this will help solve my problem :D

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- a Britax Starriser/Comfy would have fit for a booster...... WE just plum wore the cover out - and i was going to order a new one and forgot, then couldn't find any.

 

You may have a hard time finding a cover as that model was retired in 2005 (no idea why, I see the Parkway is retired also and I just bought it last year!). The new Britax booster option is the Monarch, but at 19.5 inches wide, I wouldn't be able to put 3 seats in my 3rd row. The main problem with the Sienna is the way the seat belts are placed, there is actually only 9.5 inches between the seat belts for the center seat. Also, the LATCH connectors are placed such that the attachment for the center car seat is completely underneath the driver's side car seat, which has no LATCH -- and the seat belt for that seat can be completely underneath the center car seat with some models of seats. I'm sure there is a reason they are placed that way... but is sure is a hassle for someone trying to fit 3 car seats back there!

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There are lots and lots of new car seats, for way less and at least as safe as the Britax starriser..like the Graco Turbo booster. You might want to just look in to those instead of buying a new cover.

 

I thought carseats expire after 5 years. Do they still expire after 5 years when it is a booster?

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Oh yes, I see. It looks like the current ones have the seat belt go around them, so they can't slip out from under. The older one you showed is what was still in play when my oldest was little and I didn't feel comfortable with it at all! That's why we used the type that was a full seat with it's own harness system until he was tall enough to just use the regular seatbelts. Thanks for the pics, they really help!

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I"m not using it right now. But the booster doesnt' have all the same issues as a seat with a harnessed seat with expiration... it does expire though, and it's a 5-7 year range. There are other factors to consider too.... i'd use a seat longer in CA where i moved from than i would here in FL, the sun is beating up the plastic that much more. Trust me, i've had LONG conversations on the topic with my CPS Teachers! LOL!!!

 

But, the Graco is so NOT a replacement for the Britax. I'll have to take a picture of them side by side - the the Starriser is NARROW (it adjusted wider). We are using a Graco Turbo right now, and i could not have 3 of them in the back row of the Odyssey. I could with the Britax.

 

In the BPP arena - there is just nothing like it :( (size wise)

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