Over the course of 2017, certain aspects of the legislation governing child seats are due to change and so we have prepared a list of questions you might be asking yourself:
- I have heard that the law on child seats is changing and that I will no longer be able to use booster seats without a backrest. Is that true?
Indeed it is, some changes are foreseen for February and June of this year. The exact dates are not yet known.
The first thing to make clear is that child seats can currently be produced following the technical requirements of two different regulations: regulation ECE R44/04 which goes way back and regulation ECE R129 issued two years ago.
The first change, anticipated for February, will affect the manufacture, official approval and sales of booster seats belonging to Group II (from 15 to 25 kg) approved under technical regulation ECE R44/04. Currently, manufacturers that elected to produce child seats under this regulation can choose between using a backrest or not. When the change takes effect, manufacturers in this weight group will only be able to get official approval for and be able to sell booster seats with a backrest.
The second change, scheduled for June, will affect the manufacture, official approval and sales of booster seats certified under the other technical regulation, ECE R129. In this case, child seats for children up to a maximum height of 125 cm (this new rule refers to height rather than weight) must also be submitted to an additional lateral impact test and, to pass it, they must have a backrest.
In order for these changes to come into force in Spain, they still need to be published either in the official road traffic rules (Reglamento de Tráfico) or else as a regulation of the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness.
- And what has produced these changes?
It is natural for rules to evolve over time. These changes are aimed at improving children's safety: in the event of lateral impact, backrests with side supports significantly reduce the risk of injury.
- But I already have a booster seat in my car without a backrest. Will I still be able to use it?
There is a very clear answer: YES At least until further changes are approved other than the those mentioned.
- And what if I have to buy a booster seat?
It is a different story if, within the foreseeable future, you go to buy a booster sear for children between 15 and 25 kg (Group II) or who are shorter than 125 cm. A date will be established by the Ministry of the Interior after which you will only be able to buy seats with a backrest for these children.
As soon as the date is published, we will let you know through these pages.
Remember that if you still have any queries you are welcome to contact us using the section “Ask the Expert”.
If you have a booster cushion without a backrest, recommendations to help your child travel safely are shown in the following graph: