The law regarding booster seats for children changes on March 1st 2017. Under new EU wide regulations, manufacturers are not allowed to introduce new models of backless booster seats for children weighing less than 22kg or shorter than 125cm.
These seats are unsuitable for small children and offer limited protection in the event of a collision because the child is not held securely by the adult seatbelt across their body. New models of backless booster cushions must be clearly labelled as only suitable for children over 125cm in height and 22kg in weight. The new rules don’t affect existing models of seats or cushions and it doesn’t mean that they are illegal so parents who already own and use backless boosters will still be permitted to use them.
However 66% of parents with children under the age of 12 do not know the current laws about child car seats and these changes may encourage parents to consider checking how their child travels.
The alternative is a high backed booster seat for children aged 4-12 (group2/3) that offer a safer alternative to a backless booster seat until your child reaches 125cm tall or 22kg.
Disturbingly industry safety tests show 8 out of 10 parents install child car seats incorrectly, when using a seat belt while 94% of parents use ISOFIX correctly. There are two standards for choosing a child car seat: the newer i-Size standard, based on height, and the older ECE R 44/04 standard, based on weight.
The law still requires all children less than 12 years old or under 135cm tall (whichever is first) to be carried in size appropriate restraints. Children over 12 or more than 135cm tall must wear an adult seat belt, according to the new rules. Non-compliant drivers face a fixed £30 penalty or fine of up to £500.