Car Seats, Aus vs Sweden


Our little 10 month old is exactly that, little!

I could not imagine having her front facing yet, luckily she is very happy rear facing and pretty good all round in the car. I understand that some kids start hating not being involved in whats going on and pretty much demand to forward face. Now all the advice out there is that young children should rear face for as long as possible, they do not have the ability to control their movement well enough in a car crash and are at risk when/if you crash.

The hard thing is most children grow out of capsules at between 6-12 months, our daughter is likely to make it to the at least 12 months at this stage, being prem sure makes her a midget! After the capsule stage the rear facing options are very limited, which is kind of average when statistics show that rear facing your kids reduces injuries by a whopping 90percent! In fact I find this kind of sad

– International Standards Organisation Fixation child seats, which allow children up to four years old to face the rear of a vehicle, are not available in Australia.

Well why the hell not! In Sweden it is all but law that children are rear facing till 4years. ‘All but law’ as in it is not actually law but very much frowned upon not to, nothing like public flogging!

How does Sweden keep young children so safe in cars?  How come fatalities and serious injuries are close to zero for young children? This is a common question among foreigners. Ask a Swedish parent and the answer will be a shrug, parents feel like they are doing nothing special. The answer to our safety record is a very simple and affordable approach which is very effective in keeping the little ones safe in cars.

Sweden started focusing on car seat safety in 1960’s, decades before other countries.  We realized early on that many children were dying in traffic and that almost all of these fatalities could easily be prevented by simple and affordable mesures regardless of country.  In the 1960’s we also discovered how amazingly safe rear facing was, something which has saved the lives of a large amount of children since then.

Child fatalities in traffic has decreased but is even in 2010 a common reason for children dying in modern countries.  Traffic accidents in USA are for example the number one cause of death among young children.  Thing about that for a minute.  Traffic is the largest killer of children in the country, far more common than any desease, drowning, etc.  Almost all of these fatalities are easily preventable with simple and affordable measures.

Is it not time for Australia to stand up for those that do not have a choice? Mandate rear facing child seats and put them on the market. If you need more convincing maybe this graphic below will help? Another good article from drive.com.au

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