It was Boxing Day 2011 and a five-year old girl was travelling in the backseat of her grandmother’s car. The grandmother lost control of the car on a bend on the Pacific Highway near Lismore in northern NSW. The five-year old, probably still giddy with joy after Christmas, was catapulted from the car and died instantly.
She was not restrained in a car seat.
On December 6, 2011, while a tiny eight-week-old baby was carefully wrapped in a blanket and placed in a second-hand capsule, the car she was travelling in slammed into a tree near Kilcoy in Queensland.
Baby Isabella Cardwell – who was incorrectly restrained in her capsule – was thrown more than two metres from the vehicle and died, along with her 19-year old mother who was driving the car.
Just as an FYI, you should know that this post is sponsored by Nissan. But all opinions expressed by the author are 100% authentic and written in her own words.
Kidsafe and Neuroscience Research Australia recently launched new guidelines on car seats and called on the Federal Government to upgrade the laws.
They said that the current legislation is complicated and confusing, with no centralised reference point and conflicting guidelines on what car seats to install for children.
As it is so confusing we’ve put together a simple guide to what restraint you should use, if you’re wondering ‘which car seat should i buy?’
Rearward Facing Child Restraint
These are for children from birth, with a built-in five or six point harness, where the child faces the rear of the car.
The new recommendations suggest that parents should keep their children in a rearward facing position until they are too tall for their seat, stating that this may not be until they are two or three years of age.
Currently most parents transfer their babies to a forward facing restraint around the age of six months.
Mother of two Rebecca runs the Facebook page “Rearward Facing Downunder”, a lobby group who have been running a campaign to get the National Child Restraint Laws changed to keep younger children in a rearward facing position longer.
Rebecca’s two children Evie, five months, and George, aged three and a half , both sit in rearward facing car seats.
She says it was research from Sweden that convinced her to keep her children in this position.