Newborn babies and cars. Basic Safety Guide.
Safe from day one.
Because a child is so very important to us, we have come up with some practical advice so that your child is well-protected from its very first trip.
The car must always be equipped with a child restraint system
Child car seats for vehicles are probably the most important safety measure for children. When travelling with newborn babies we should take into account the following recommendations:
- The child seat should be specifically designed for newborns and small babies, given that they can prevent up to 90% of serious or fatal injuries that can occur in a car accident. We should never travel with the child in our arms.
- We should have a child seat ready for the day that the mother gives birth . We recommend being particularly cautious about second-hand child seats, given that they might not be in perfect condition and may not be able to protect the child as well.
- Practice how to correctly install the child seat before putting the child in it. The ISOFIX system is designed to avoid errors in installation.
- Whether the trip is a long or a short one, the newborn baby should always travel with a child restraint sytem appropriate for its weight and height.
- The child should be rear-facing up to 15 months old. At Fundación MAPFRE we recommend that children should continue to sit in rear-facing child seats until the age of four.
- The baby should not be seated in an upright position. A slightly reclined position halfway between lying flat and sitting up is the most recommendable.
- As the child grows, the child seat should be changed.
- The child seat must be placed on the rear seats. The only exceptions are if the vehicle does not have rear seats, if the rear seats are already occupied by other children in child seats or if child seats cannot be placed on them.
- The safest seat is the middle seat as it is further away from the doors. However, ISOFIX anchors are usually fitted onto the two side seats. In this case it is best to place the child restraint system on the rear seat behind the front passenger seat in order to have better access to the child and to be able to see the child.
- We should never place a child facing the rear in the passenger seat if the airbag cannot be disabled.
- The child restraint should be an approved model. The European ECE R44/04 and R129 (i-Size) standards are currently in force. This means that the child seat model has been subjected to certain safety tests before being put on sale.