Bin The Booster Campaign!
Leading child safety brand Britax who have been making child safety seats since 1960 have this week launched a campaign urging parents to ditch the cheapest and most portable types of car seats as they can be dangerous in the event of an accident.
With prices starting at less than £10, basic booster seats are popular with parents looking for something cheap and easy to move from car to car. But Britax has released a video that highlights the differences in passenger protection between a simple booster seat and a high-backed child seat when a vehicle is involved in a frontal collision which is why they are now cmpigning for the cheaper option to be ditched.
The current law says that children must travel in a car seat until they are 135cm tall or approximately 12 years old, whichever comes first. With this in mind, many parents opt for a simple booster cushion to help lift their child and ensure the car seat belt sits across them at the right angle. However, BRITAX found that approximately half (49%) of seat belts used to secure child seats may be fitted incorrectly. They are often twisted, too high, or fitted around the seat and not the child which is why the high cushioned backed ones are much safer.
In the safety test video below which has been released by the company as part of their campaign, Britax have carried out a crash test with dummies, one in a cheap small booster seat and the other in a secure high-backed one. It simulates a collision at 42mph, using the first seat from group 2-3, which are designed to protect children aged 4-12, and shows how the car’s seatbelt fails to restrain the child on the booster properly, allowing them to slip free and hit their head on the door.
The other dummy in the full seat is restrained which therefore demonstrates that the latter offers much more safety!
Mark Bennett, a safety expert at Britax, said that the test “demonstrates the importance of deep protective side wings, head support and seatbelt guides, although simple booster cushions are legal, it makes and recommends only high-backed booster seats.”