Young children are some of the most vulnerable people on our roads, and making sure they have a safe car seat is one of the best ways to protect them.

But car seats can be tricky to install, and new data sheds light on some of the common mistakes that parents and carers are making.

We recently teamed up with Kidsafe for a car seat safety blitz, carrying out free safety checks on over 620 child car seats across Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane during National Road Safety Week in May.

Over 90% of the seats checked during the safety blitz needed adjustments – or in some cases, total reinstallation.

Common errors that needed fixing were:

  • loose or twisted seatbelts,
  • rear facing seats at incorrect angles or reclines,
  • seatbelts or ISOFIX-compatible connectors not connected properly,
  • incorrect harness heights, and
  • tether straps twisted or not fastened correctly to an anchor point.

Professional car seat fitters corrected errors in over 560 car seats as part of our program, giving hundreds of parents and carers peace of mind next time they hit the road.

While Australia has very high levels of child restraint use (99%), it’s estimated that more than half of child restraints are used incorrectly, and nearly 40% are used in a way that would impair crash performance, with people often making more than one mistake simultaneously.

A correctly fitted child car seat can significantly reduce the risk of injury in an accident by up to 70%.

That’s why were reminding parents and carers that it’s best to get your seat fitted by a professional – not just the first time it’s installed, but every time your child progresses from one seat to the next.

Find out where you can get your car seat installed or checked.

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