Rear facing car seats

27 Sep

As Hannah approached her first birthday, I was so excited that I could finally turn her car seat around. She’d be able to face forward and see what was going on like a big girl. It would be a milestone. Her car seat had to be rear facing until 9 kgs or 1 year. And she was (is) small, so the 9 kilos thing wasn’t happening before she turned 1.

I was going to turn that seat around the minute I could. Until my friend posted a video on Facebook.

Oh. My. Gosh. In 38 seconds, my mind was changed. I didn’t turn her seat around until the last possible minute, when she got too big to safely rear face in that particular (or any here in Australia) car seat. And when I did, all she could see was the back of a head rest. She’d had a better view facing backwards. Sigh.

If they made rear facing car seats for kids over 9kgs/1 year old, I’d put both of mine in them in a heart beat.

But wait – they DO make rear facing car seats for kids over 9kgs/ 1 year old! What?! That’s right, they do. Just not over here. Sigh.

I have lots of readers from the UK. Well, there are rear facing car seats available to you for kids up to 18kg/4 years.  Most of you just don’t know about them.

In Nordic countries, kids are rear facing until 4. And guess what? Child fatalities in car crashes are significantly lower.

Infographic courtesy of



Remember the way the forward facing child’s head flew forward in the crash video?

That sounds pretty painful!  Rear facing car seats are up to 5 times safer for kids up to the age of 4.

I know what you’re thinking. How can a 3 year old sit rear facing, where will her legs go? Yeah, that’s a fair thought.

photo courtesy of

Kids are actually very comfortable sitting like that. Hannah always gets me to put the foot rest on the pram to it’s highest position so she can sit like that in the pram. She prefers sitting like that. Plus, there have not been any cases of  a child breaking his/her legs in a car crash when sitting in a rear facing car seat. However, leg injuries are common in crashes when a child is facing forward.

How can you keep an eye on your rear facing child? Mirrors.

photo courtesy of ibabystore

Gee, I sure wish I could buy a rear facing car seat for Hannah and Daniel. How is it that there is all this proof of the seats being so much safer, but it is not law, nor are the seats even readily available in lots of countries? That’s pretty outrageous if you ask me. I might have to lobby the government. Anything to keep my kids safe.

For more information about rear facing car seats, including rear facing myths, how to fit rear facing seats, where to buy rear facing car seats, and to watch informational videos, go to

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2 Responses to “Rear facing car seats”

  1. theadventuresofesquared September 28, 2012 at 1:29 am #

    I researched and researched whether to put my little boy rear or forward facing and after I watched the YouTube video my decision was easily made. That video scared the crap out of me. If you don’t ever put them facing forward they won’t ever know what they’re missing out on. 🙂

    • Mommy Adventures September 28, 2012 at 5:13 am #

      Exactly. They won’t know the difference. I just signed a petition here in Australia to make rear facing car seats available for toddlers. It’s apparently not against the law to use them, but it’s against the law to use car seats not approved to Australian standards, and none of the rear facing seats for toddlers are because no one makes them over here. Sigh.

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