Baby Car Seat Information
One of the very first purchases that all new parents must make is baby car seat. In the UK, all children under three years of age must be properly restrained in an appropriate car seat, whether they are travelling in the front or backseat of the car. The only exception to this rule is when riding in a licensed taxi or licensed hire car, although parents should make every effort to provide a car seat when transporting babies and young children by these means.
Car seats provide a measure of safety for young passengers that is simply not possible without their use and safe travel is a concern for every parent.
When purchasing a car seat you must make sure that it fits correctly in your car and any car that it will be used in. There is no point buying the best car seat around with all the seafety features you can imagine if it doesn't fit. Buy your car seat from a reputable company or baby store as they will have qualififed staff that will check the car seat is compatible with your car, and will also be able to fit it for you. Finally before you leave the store ensure you know how to correctly fit the car seat.
What the Law MandatesAs of September 18, 2006, the following regulations apply to transporting children by car in the UK:
Newborn-3 Years Old:
- For children up to three years old, a correct child restraint must be used, in both the front seat and back seat of a vehicle.
- Rear facing child restraints are not permitted for use in the front seat of a vehicle with an active front airbag.
- In a licensed taxi, a child may ride unrestrained if no child restraint is available.
- For children from three years old and up to 1.35m or up to 12 years old, the correct child restraints must be used in the front seat and also in the back seat, if seat belts are available. This means that all children under 1.35m or under 12 years old must use a booster seat with an adult seat belt.
The three exceptions to this law are:
- Travelling in a licensed taxi or licensed hire car.
- A child unexpectedly needs to be transported only a short distance.
- There are already two child restraints being used in the back seat, not allowing for the use of a third.
- Adult seat belts must be worn while riding in either the front or the back seat of a vehicle, if seat belts are available.