It’s time for our family to change out car seats again. As we do this, I’m reflecting back on a Nissan Bloggin’Mamas event, Why Car Seat Safety Matters, that I attended. The event was to educate Dallas mothers on general child vehicle safety, car seat safety and safety features you can find in Nissan vehicles. I also had the opportunity to be behind the wheel and drive some of Nissan’s latest vehicles like the 2017 Rogue around the Mandalay Canal in Las Colinas. The following video shows the fun and educational event.
Video Installing a Combination Harness-2-Booster Car Seat:
The following video shows one of Nissan’s Sr. Engineers, Danielle Bojanzyk, installing a forward facing, combination harness-2-booster car seat. She explains in great detail how to safely latch and secure the car seat. I especially loved how she explained where the car seat should and shouldn’t wiggle or move. The car seat should have about an inch of movement. She shows how to secure the car seat with a tether and lower anchors and then with a tether and seat belt.
Having a seat that is too loose is the number-one mistake parents make with installing a car seat. Make sure to compare your seat with Danielle’s explanation in the video; remember, no more than one inch of movement to the left, right or forward.
Understanding Lower Anchors, Seat Belts, and Tethers:
Lower Anchors are the metal u-shaped bars hidden in vehicle’s seat cracks. A tether is usually a ring or bar found behind the seat. To secure a car seat in place, use either the lower anchors or a seat belt but never both. If you choose to use a seat belt to install your car seat, make sure you know how to engage the lock on the seat belt! In the video, Danielle shows how she engages the lock on the seat belt, but also check your car manual for instructions as shoulder-belt locks and lap-belt locks work differently. With a forward-facing car seat, use a tether if one is available.
Here are a few statistics according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), an organization responsible for keeping people safe on the roadways.
1) 59% children’s car seats are used incorrectly.
2) Leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 13 years of age are car crashes.
Nissan’s Snug-Kid’s Program:
I was extremely impressed with Nissan’s Snug-Kids program. Snug Kids, an industry-first program, had safety engineers spend thousands of hours testing and evaluating child restraint systems (CRS) also known as child safety seats by installing hundreds of CRS into rear seats Nissan Vehicles. Click here for the complete Snug Kids Guide for Nissan vehicles.
Again, How Much Movement Should an Infant and Toddler Car Seat Have:
The following video, Biggest Mistake Made Installing a Car Seat with Nissan Safety Academy, shows Danielle Bojanzyk, Nissan’s Sr. Engineer, explaining where a backward facing car seat should have movement and how much when installed in a car.
Thank you again Bloggin’ Mamas, Nissan Snug-Kids, and Danielle Bojanzyk for sponsoring this educational and informative hands-on event. WiseMommies has three children under 10 yrs of age who are all in 5-point harness Britax Convertible and Clicktight Combination Harness-2-Booster Car Seat. Please take time to check over your safety guidelines for car seats for children or to share the facts and safety checks with friends who have children.
My final words of wisdom:
Regarding car seat safety, yes my son, even at 10 yrs of age will most likely still be in a 5-point harness car seat. I’ve been shocked at many things such as how other kids and even parents have made fun of us for this choice and how many of his friends starting with the age of 5 were only sitting in a booster seat or not even a booster seat but only using a seat belt. I have another wise mom friend, Aaron Conway, click here, to read a day in her life, who once said, “Harnesses are clearly safer and I don’t know why they are not available in all vehicles. Race cars have harnesses for safety reasons and I’d feel much safer wearing one.”
I’ve come to realize that many parents assume that a certain age inherently graduates their child on to the next level of car seat choice and or position.
Car accidents and human physiology do not follow such guidelines and your choice needs to be based on many factors.
Car seats have been created to best protect children depending on the size of a child not the age.
The NHTSA’s charts offer a well-researched guide to help parents find the best car seat for your child depending on the size of their child.