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The British Are Coming! The British Are Coming!

In a press release heard ’round the world on Friday, the British Medical Journal announced a new recommendation that children up to age 4 should remain rear-facing in child restraints when riding in a vehicle.  What makes this advice so extraordinary is that researchers are telling health care professionals to advise parents and caregivers that rear-facing seats are safer for children under age 4.  That’s a big step.  Think about it: most babies in the UK are turned forward at around 9 kg.  That’s 19.8 lbs. to you and me here in the States.  Both of my kiddos hit that weight somewhere between 4 and 5 months old (yes, you read that right). 

OK, but really, big deal, right?  They’re finally jumping on the rear-facing bandwagon over there in the UK.  It’s about time, right?  Haven’t we been blowing the rear-facing hot air toward them for a long time?  Our very own American Academy of Pediatrics has been recommending since 2002 that “If a car safety seat accommodates children rear facing to higher weights, for optimal protection, the child should remain rear facing until reaching the maximum weight for the car safety seat, as long as the top of the head is below the top of the seat back.”  Kathleen Weber in her 2000 paper, Crash Protection for Child Passengers, A Review of Best Practice (UMTRI Research Review 31(3):1-27 (2000) ) noted that children were safer rear-facing for as long as possible.  This isn’t a new concept. 

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Mia Moda Viva Supreme Infant Seat Giveaway!

You can read our full review of the Mia Moda Viva Supreme 5080.  Today, Mia Moda is sponsoring a giveaway of a Viva Supreme to one of our readers!  You will have your choice of the Kaleidoscope or Willow pattern below, shipped right to you from the great people at Mia Moda!

All you have to do to win is leave a comment!  You are not eligible if you have previously won a carseat or sponsor giveaway at CarseatBlog.com (our own giveaways of bags and such don’t count if no sponsor was mentioned).  Blog writers and editors are also not eligible.  Only one entry per household/family, please.  If you leave more than one comment, only the first one will count.  We politely ask that you only enter if you intend to use this infant seat and would also appreciate the favor of a followup comment about the Viva Supreme in reply to our review.  Eligibility outside of the USA will depend on where Mia Moda is able to ship this product.  A random winner will be chosen on Friday from eligible comments left in reply to this blog. 

We reserve the right to deem any entry as ineligible for any reason, though this would normally only be done in the case of a violation of the spirit of the rules above.  We also reserve the right to edit/update the rules if necessary.  Good luck!

Infant Seat First Look: Britax Chaperone Review

The Britax Chaperone is an infant carrier model from Britax, replacing the popular Companion.  The Chaperone carrier is sold separately and also in a travel system together with the Chaperone stroller.  In fact, you can even buy the infant carrier and the matching stroller and qualify for this great rebate offer from Britax.

The Chaperone is listed for babies 4 to 30 pounds, 32 inches or less in height and a seated shoulder height of 6.9 to 10 inches tall.  With a relatively low bottom harness slot and the included infant insert, it should fit many premature babies well.  It also touts an anti-rebound bar on the base (also sold separately), a relatively rare feature for infant seats in the USA.  The twist-free harness quickly adjusts to seven height positions with no re-threading required, while the head restraint section allows it to meet the Britax True Side Impact Protection criteria.  A built-in lockoff and premium LATCH attachments with push-button releases are also included.

Collateral Damage

A dark wintry night.  A crash.  Properly installed seats.  The passengers in the vehicle?  Mom and two children.  The youngest child admitted to the hospital for overnight observation is roughed up, but otherwise OK.  Mom, the driver, was checked out at the hospital and released to spend the night with her daughter as she slept in her hospital bed.  Unfortunately, she wasn’t able to get any sleep herself as she was frantic with worry about her other daughter who was life-flighted to a different hospital out-of-state, a place better able to handle her traumatic injuries.