Booster Seat Safety: For The clek Of It
There are a few reasons I love clek. The people that work there are just f-ing cool and very dedicated to child passenger safety, they make a tremendous product and want to make sure it's as perfect as possible when it hits the marketplace, and their sense of design is absolutely stunning.
Yes, even for something normally as hideous as a car seat.
I was introduced to the clek booster seats in my retail days and, like most things, we were not trained properly. It certainly was a bit more money than most booster seats on the market, and it was impossible to explain to parents why they should purchase it if we didn't know anything about it ourselves. I was struck by how attractive they were as well as the fact that they used LATCH to install—which is odd for booster seats. I soon learned that, in this case, “odd” meant “awesome.” WHY do you want boosters to attach with LATCH? Let's talk about projectiles in the event of a car accident.
If you have a 5 pound item (such as a purse—who am I kidding)….a 10 pound item in your car and you're traveling at 30 miles per hour, that 10 lb purse suddenly weighs 300 lbs. So, when you come to an abrupt stop, such as in a car crash, that's a LOT of force and you've got quite a missile there. Thank you, Newton's Law of Motion, for explaining this. And that's at THIRTY miles per hour…imagine if you're going faster…
So, if you can use LATCH to keep your booster seat in-place, not only is it going to provide a sturdier seat for your child, but it will not roll around your backseat while you're child isn't in it—thus making it less of an annoyance and not a projectile risk. Something to think about, no?
Now let's talk about boosters. Booster seats are used to elevate your child to “fit” into a car's pre-existing seat belt. The law states, in most cases, that boosters must be used until a child is 4'9. This is where it gets tricky. As I've discussed before, heights can vary in where they're distributed. Some people have long legs, some long torsos, and some a mix of both. If you've a long-legged child with a short torso, they're going to need to stay in the booster seat a bit longer. There's a great 5-Step Test from SafetyBeltSafe USA.
1.Does the child sit all the way back against the auto seat?2.Do the child's knees bend comfortably at the edge of the auto seat?
3.Does the belt cross the shoulder between the neck and the arm?
4.Is the lap belt as low as possible, touching the thighs?
5.Can the child stay seated like this for the whole trip?
Lots of parents leave boosters too soon, and many studies suggest kids should ride in boosters until age 10-12, although this will vary by child and automobile.
So, why not keep your child safer in a comfortable, easy-to-install seat for as long as possible??
The clek Olli has a weight limit of 120 pounds and is available at Magic Beans and other retailers.
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