Ensuring your child is carried safely inside a car is a priority for any parent; in fact, child seats are not only a priority but also a legal necessity for smaller infants.
Although UK laws have been in place for some time, they were amended in 2017 due to safety concerns. The basic rules regarding age and height remain: children must use child seats until they are 12 years of age or more than 135cm in height. They are then subject to the adult rules relating to seatbelts.
The major change relates to backless seats. Children must weigh 22kg or be more than 125cm in height to use this type of seat, which is an increase from the previous measurements. Breaking these rules can mean a fine of up to £500.
The new law means that manufacturers cannot produce new backless seats for children who do not meet these requirements. The change in rules does not impact existing models and does not render them illegal, but parents or childminders must be aware of the new rules.
The government says that the new technical standards will mean that the seats available for children will be better suited to them and consequently safer.
Adequate insurance cover
It is not only parents who need to be aware of the law relating to child seats. Professionals in the motor trade – from garages to valet companies – who may need to remove a seat to carry out work must ensure that the seat is replaced correctly and anchored properly. Such companies will be aware of the importance of checking their motor trade insurance and making sure they have adequate cover for the work they carry out. Quotes for this kind of insurance can be found at sites such as quotemetoday.co.uk.
Drivers who regularly carry a child or children in their vehicles will also want to ensure they understand how to fit a child seat correctly and that the seat they purchase is appropriate for their car. Manufacturers indicate which seats are suitable for children by specifying the weight and height limits.
Finally, it is important to check any changes in the law and review the seat you are using as your child grows. Their safety can only be guaranteed if you are using an appropriate child seat as recommended by the manufacturer.