May 15, 2021

Maori News & Indigenous Views

New child car seat safety recommendations will reduce serious injuries (Plunket)

2 min read

One of the worlds leading authorities on child health and safety, The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), has issued new recommendations on child car seat safety.

The AAP has refined the recommended time infants and toddlers should, where possible, remain rear-facing from at least 12 months of age to 2 years of age. Sue Campbell, Plunkets National Child Safety Advisor says that Plunket supports the recommendation and resources will be updated accordingly.

This is a very positive development. The evidence tells us that children under age two are 75 per cent safer rear facing than forward facing.

Rear facing is when a child’s car seat is placed into the car facing the back window. If an accident occurs the child’s body moves into the back of the seat shell and the head, neck and spine are supported. During an impact the rear facing child slides up the back of the seat, and back down. Forces are reduced around the neck and spine and the force of the impact is evenly distributed across the car seat and the child, Sue says.

Rear-facing until 2 years of age is not a legal requirement, it is a recommendation based on best practice, which is that all infants and toddlers should ride in a rear-facing car seat until they are 2 years old or have outgrown the restraint.

The safest place for all car seats is in the back seat, so that they are away from airbags that are in car dashboards. Its important that parents and caregivers remember to buckle children in every time they are riding in the car, no matter how short the journey.

Parents and caregivers can seek expert assistance from a Child restraint technician who can advise about the best car seat for your childs age and weight, and one that is best suited to your car. Child restraint technicians are available through Plunket car seat rental schemes, and at a number of other hire outlets or retailers.

For information on a car seat rental scheme near you visit

Plunket advocates every child in a safe seat for every journey.


For more information contact

Sue Campbell

Plunket National Child Safety Advisor
027 244 4430
[email protected]

Nikki Hooper
External Communications Executive
021 405 842
[email protected]

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