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  Car Seat: Safety tips

Can you list some safety tips for traveling with a baby in a car seat?

- Buy a good quality car seat which has SABS approval.

- Never allow the baby to be unrestrained in a moving car.

- Investigate the various types of seats and decide which one will best suit your lifestyle and budget.

- If possible avoid buying a second hand seat unless you know the history,have the instruction manuals for the seat,and it is not too old.

- Ensure that the seat is properly installed and is firmly in place.

- If possible place the seat in the centre of the back seat, which is the safest position in the car.

- For very small babies, use the cushioned inserts which prevent the baby from flopping in a chair that is too big. This is vitally important for the neck region in particular.

- Make sure that the shoulder straps are at the correct height for the baby. Many chairs have more that one slot so that the straps can be adjusted as the baby grows.

- Make sure that the straps lie flat and hold the baby snug without being tight.

- Make sure that you know the weight limits for the chair that you choose, and be ready to purchase a new one once the baby nears the weight limits for the chair.

- Never use a car seat facing forward on the front seat

- Never use a rear facing car seat on the front seat of a car which has air bags, as the force of the air bags activating can seriously injure a baby.

- In very cold weather it is better to strap baby into the seat and then put blankets over, than to have extremely bulky clothing which interferes with the straps and restraints of the car seat.

- Attach toys to car seat with short straps that cannot tangle or cause problems. Toys designed for use in cars are usually the best choice.

- Do not have heavy items loose in the car as they could get dislodged and cause injury.

See also:

Car Seat - Correct size

Car Seat - Fitting the seat

Car Seat - Front or back of car

Car Seat - Is is compulsory

Car Seat - Keeping baby happy

Car Seat - Resistance from baby

Car Seat - Safety

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