Safety Archive

Vaccinate Against the #1 Killer of Kids


You’ve no doubt read about the epidemic that is killing kids left and right.  It has spread to everywhere in the USA, Canada and around the globe.  It’s an equal opportunity killer and it doesn’t distinguish among race, sex, income or education level.

Fortunately, there are three types of effective vaccine widely available now.  They are proven to be very effective at reducing fatalities and serious injuries with no side effects.  And, there’s no waiting.  Here’s how to get yours:

Christmas came early this year, thanks to Transport Canada

Combi Center DX infant seat, which detached from the base during testing resulting in a voluntary recall in Canada.

Combi Center DX, since recalled in Canada, pre-test

I’ve spent the last two weeks digging out from under all the virtual wrapping paper, under a very special early virtual Christmas tree. Our government friends here in the great white north sent us a gift that may well give your Lady Liberty a run for her money. I haven’t seen my colleagues so excited since the last release of new Britax fashions. Transport Canada is no Scrooge, that’s for sure–with a free-for-bandwidth virtual haberdashery of crash test footage now available on the government agency’s website. This isn’t the usual made in China knock-off crap, either. You won’t see mom and dad’s old Mercury Monarch rear seat bench magically propelled into a thick wall of nothingness. Nope. Unlike your Coach purse, this is the real thing. Real carseats, real vehicles. The babies are still fake, but they had to draw the line somewhere.

If you haven’t already taken a look, click away:

Some of that crash test footage was pretty darn shocking, and I’m thinking you’re here because you don’t want your anthropomorphic test dummy’s head slamming into your vehicle’s front seats with such force that said dummy’s going to have more than just a splitting headache as a result. Either that or you’re a concerned parent, Child Passenger Safety Technician, or Children’s Restraint Technician. Perhaps you’re a member of the media reporting on the evils of child restraints and how they fail during testing–but you don’t quite know enough about carseats to really understand what all these failures mean in the real world. The real world..the real babies. The ATDs, however, come at a cost of into six figures. That’s a whole lot of in-vitro, if you went that route. ATD or the more organic version, a real live baby, we want to protect our investments…’ lives.

Transport Canada NCAP Crash Tests


The big CPS-related news story of the week (and maybe even the whole month) is undoubtedly going to be the video footage of  Transport Canada’s NCAP Testing.  TC recently made the videos public and has provided us with an outstanding summary of their findings.  I commend TC for “trusting” that we can handle this.  We can handle this, right?  Honestly, I think the best way to thank them is to not freak out and make them sorry they decided to release these videos. Personally, I always hate when information is withheld from the public for fear of causing panic.  We’re all intelligent, logical and analytical. I doubt anyone who cares enough to read this blog is going to throw their child restraint away and start riding around with their kids unrestrained in a moving vehicle.  Of course you could decide never to drive anywhere again and hey, if that’s your decision, I highly recommend Lancaster County, PA (aka Dutch Amish capital of the world).  But even travel by horse and buggy with kids is risky so there’s no avoiding risk altogether. 

LATCH to 80 Pounds: Progress or Confusion?


Sunshine Kids Radian XT SLOver a year ago we asked, “What Would You Do?”  Using LATCH beyond 40 pounds has been a major industry issue that has gone without resolution for years.  Now, Sunshine Kids has an answer.  Will it set the trend and ultimately resolve the problem or will it just complicate LATCH even more?

For almost a decade, we’ve known that the issue of LATCH weight limits would be a problem.  The 8o pound rated Britax Husky has been around since 2002.  Since then, every year, at every conference, the question has been asked to experts from the automobile and child restraint manufacturers.  “Why can’t I use LATCH after 40 (or 48) pounds?”  Even better, “My child restraint instruction manual says I must use a top tether for higher weight children, but my vehicle manufacturer says I can’t, what do I do?”  The answer to these questions?  It’s always the same.  “We are working hard to resolve these issues, give the manufacturers time to come up with a good solution.”  Or, “There is a technical working group studying the problem and they will have recommendations soon.”

No solutions or answers ever came.