Hopefully you’ll already know that the law surrounding car booster seats are set to change soon. However, whilst the law was originally meant to come into force in December, it’s now been delayed until 2017 and is unlikely to come into effect until March 2017. The delay has been caused because the United Nations must implement the law before the European Union can do the same. Whilst it won’t come into force until next year, it’s still worth preparing for the changes now. Here’s everything you need to know about the new law:
Under current UK law, any child that weighs 15kg, the average weight of a three-year-old, is permitted to travel in a backless booster seat. The new law will mean that backless booster seats can only be used by children that are taller than 125cm and weigh more than 22kg.
Of course, the reason for the change is to improve safety for children. Experts agree that backless booster seats aren’t suitable for young children. The argument is that small children can’t be held securely in the seat ad the adult seatbelt isn’t guided across their bodies appropriately. Plus, backless booster seats offer no protection if a child is involved in a side-impact crash.
With the looming threat of Brexit, there is speculation about whether the law will come into force as it is an EU law. At present, children weighing over 15kg can still legally be seated in backless booster seats.
Even if the law doesn’t come into effect, we would still recommend using a seat with a back to ensure maximum safety. Why, you ask? We’ll let the experts explain. Which? child car seat expert, Lisa Galliers commented: “A decent high-backed booster seat provides better protection in a front crash, as they're designed to guide the adult seat-belt across the child's body properly, and our crash tests prove they offer much more protection in a side-impact crash that a backless booster seat alone.”