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Is it illegal for a FF carseat to go in the front seat? - Page 2

post #21 of 89
personally, i would have her RF in the front seat with the air bag turned off and the seat as far back as it goes. she is safer RF than FF, in the back or front seat.
post #22 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by srain
Illegal or not, driving a car is not the safest transportation option. Staying home or taking public transportation is safest. But most people don't limit themselves in that way- yet live with that without a second thought.
I doubt that all of them live with that without a second thought. I have a feeling there are far too many second-thinkers out there and I feel sorry for every one of them.
post #23 of 89
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbhf
personally, i would have her RF in the front seat with the air bag turned off and the seat as far back as it goes. she is safer RF than FF, in the back or front seat.
actually, i would do that, but there is a warning on the visor in the front seat, AND on the carseat, that you cannot put a REAR facing carseat in the front seat. i have no idea why. if it goes in the front, it is going to have to be forward facing, apparently.

but hey, i'll try to look into it a bit more. maybe i misunderstood. does anyone know why a RF seat cannot go in the front?


dallaschildren -- what you quoted there did not say anything about carseats in the front seat. or did i just miss something?

i will already be mailing some of my things at some point. but i have so much stuff, in all different places... i cannot avoid packing the car. i will be packing the fragile stuff, as well as clothes, blankets, etc... the stuff i need with me immediately. it fills up REALLY fast, no matter how we work it out. we have driven this twice.... enough to know that we need all the room we can get. i will have to mail a ton even with packing the car.

i cannot switch her back and front, from front to back. it will have to be one or the other. the car will be packed in such a way that i cannot unpack and repack it during the trip.

i will definitely get some bungee cords to secure the stuff packed in my car, thanks for the suggestion.

anyway, about the setup in the back... dd will be surrounded by all the stuff in the back. there wont be a lot of room for her things. she'll have toys of course, but yeah. even if i put her in the back, i will have her forward facing, if nothing else. we need to be able to see each other for this trip.
post #24 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbhf
personally, i would have her RF in the front seat with the air bag turned off and the seat as far back as it goes. she is safer RF than FF, in the back or front seat.
: If you absolutely have to have her in the front seat, please do leave her rear-facing and double- and triple- check the airbag (if you have one). My guess is that the sign is there because you have airbags or automatic seatbelts (another no-no). Check to see if the airbag can be disengaged. I cannot caution you strongly enough against putting your newly 1-year-old daughter forward-facing in the front seat. That's increasing her danger level significantly. Nothing magical happens at 1 year of age to make your child better able to withstand a forward projection. They just had to put the line somewhere (and, IMO, they chose to draw it way too early).

This page has good info:

http://www.buckleupnc.org/using_installation.cfm


Apparently, installing in the back seat increases safety by 25%. That's pretty significant. I know you're low on options, though.
post #25 of 89
I just searched and you can find roof carriers that don't require a roof rack.
post #26 of 89
Thread Starter 
dragonfly -- thank you!! that link was so informative. i only was considering putting her ff in the front because i thought i HAD to (because of the warnings in the car).

the car does not have an automatic seatbelt, but i will make absolutely sure about the airbag.
post #27 of 89
I do want to reiterate and EMPHASIZE several suggestions to check state laws for EVERY state you would be passing through...basically, you are crossing the country, yes?....you would hate to wind up with a huge ticket because you happened to go through a state where being in the front seat is illegal....if you WILL be passing through a state(s) where it is illegal, that might make the difference as to whether you put her in the front seat at all, if you are not going to be able to change it midway.......which would be nice to know BEFORE you packed up your car...LOL!..I can tell you for sure that it is NOT illegal in Indiana, if that helps.........
I also second the putting her RF, if you do not have an airbag or auto. seatbelts...it will make being in the front seat a bit safer....although I want to say I understand your concerns here...Safety being as very important as it is, driving all the way across the US with a screaming, unhappy toddler in the backseat would be awful, and if her being in the front helps, I would go for it!!
Personally, I refuse to travel with my angel for more than about 20 mins at a time in the car (basically, in-town driving, to the store, etc), except during the night, when she is sleeping, because it is too horribly awful for us...We are making the Thanksgiving trek (3.5 hrs one-way) in the middle of the night (good thing DH loves coffee!!!). I can not IMAGINE what an amazing person you are to be doing this....best of luck!!
post #28 of 89
Thread Starter 
bobandjess99 - im trying to find the laws in each state, thank you. i cant seem to find any clear easy-to-understand information though. ohio may be an issue... if it still is against the law, then i guess i dont have a choice. i cannot avoid driving through ohio.
post #29 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by kirei
actually, i would do that, but there is a warning on the visor in the front seat, AND on the carseat, that you cannot put a REAR facing carseat in the front seat. i have no idea why. if it goes in the front, it is going to have to be forward facing, apparently.

but hey, i'll try to look into it a bit more. maybe i misunderstood. does anyone know why a RF seat cannot go in the front?
as someone else said, the reason is airbags. just make sure they're turned off.
post #30 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Baudelaire
Illegal or not, the front seat is NOT the safest seat. By putting your child in the front seat, you're choosing to put him in a seat that you know is not as safe as one in the back. Can you live with that?
I'm curious, I keep my 4 year old's car seat in the center of the back seat - despite enormous inconvenience - because it is by far the safest place in the car to sit. Is that what you do?
post #31 of 89
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post #32 of 89
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post #33 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by kirei

but hey, i'll try to look into it a bit more. maybe i misunderstood. does anyone know why a RF seat cannot go in the front?


dallaschildren -- what you quoted there did not say anything about carseats in the front seat. or did i just miss something?

.

A safety seat cannot go rearfacing in the front seat of a car if you have an airbag and it cannot be shut off. Airbags deploy at a high rate of speed and your child would be seriously injured or killed if it deploys into her. More here:

Q: Should I put a rear-facing infant seat in the front seat of a vehicle with a passenger side air bag?
A: No. Unless the vehicle is equipped with a cut-off switch for the air bag and the air bag is shut off, under absolutely no circumstances should a parent place a rear-facing infant seat in front of an air bag. There is an extremely high risk of severe injury or fatality in this situation, and a child should never be subjected to this risk. Even if the air bag is shut off or there is no air bag, the safest place for all children 12 and under is in the rear seat.
Many parents are concerned about having an infant rear-facing in the rear seat. However, the American Academy of Pediatrics stresses that a healthy baby buckled correctly in a rear-facing infant seat is as safe as a baby placed in a crib for a nap or overnight sleep. The risk of serious injury in a crash is much greater than the risk of a healthy baby having a life threatening health problem during a car ride. If no rear seat is available in which to place a rear-facing infant seat, and another mode of transportation is available, use of that alternative should be considered.

And this:

Q: Should I put a forward-facing child safety seat in the right front seat with an air bag? Will the child be safe if the air bag deploys?
A: NHTSA recommends placing all children 12 and under in the rear seat. That is the safest place. If no option exists other than seating a young child in the front seat, several steps must be taken. First, the child needs to be properly restrained in the child seat. Second, the vehicle seat needs to be pushed all the way back, to maximize the distance between the child and the air bag.

Do you have an on/off switch already installed in your car for the front passenger airbag? If not read here for what to do:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Q2: Can I disable the air bag(s) in my vehicle? How can it be done? Who do I contact?
A: Disabling an air bag is difficult and can be dangerous. Federal law prohibits dealers, repair shops, etc. from disabling air bags. Further, state inspection laws may require air bags to be fully functional. More important, because air bags have been shown to save more than 1,750 lives, NHTSA strongly discourages disabling except in special circumstances.
On January 6, 1997, NHTSA issued a Federal Register notice proposing that all owners be permitted to have their driver and/or passenger air bags disabled if they are made aware of the consequences and sign an informed consent agreement. This proposal was open for comments through February 5, 1997. The agency will make a final decision on this proposal. A copy of this proposal can be found on the Internet (www.nhtsa.dot.gov) or if you provide your name and address, a copy will be mailed to you. Until that final decision is made, owners must follow the agency's current policy which is to grant exemptions in cases involving either a child in a rear-facing child seat who has a medical condition requiring close monitoring by the driver, or a vehicle that does not have any rear seat in which to install a child seat.

Q6: What do I do if a dealer does not honor a waiver for disconnecting an air bag issued by NHTSA to an individual?
A: NHTSA does not have authority to require any dealer to disconnect an air bag. If a dealer will not disconnect an air bag for a vehicle owner that has obtained a waiver to disconnect, the owner should seek another dealer. If other dealers will not disconnect the air bag the owner could contact an independent service garage. An owner should never attempt to disconnect the air bag themselves. An air bag system is highly sophisticated and the air bag deploys with great force. Tampering with an air bag system could put the owner at risk of physical harm due to an inadvertent deployment.


You can find the application to disable your airbag at www.nhtsa.dot.gov


As for driving through states in relation to their child passenger laws.............I would contact your local police department for information on your liability when travelling through other states. I would think that if you are driving through and not stopping, then there would be some sort of "waiver" that allows you exemption from fines/tickets.

Dallaschildren
CPS tech and momma to 2 sons in seats
post #34 of 89
You can go RF in the front seat provided you turn the airbags off. My dd was rear facing in the front seat if there was only one adult in the car until her reflux was better under control. We almost lost her because she vomitted in the back seat and had a mouth full of puke and couldn't get it out. I hate to think what would have happened if I hadn't had the dog with me that morning-I would not have pulled over if the dog hadn't bit my arm after I told her to quit barking. We got a note from our pediatrician but were never asked for it--I did get some pretty nasty looks from people who of course didn't know our situation though.
post #35 of 89
From one mother to another, I would say please put her in the back seat. I know what you mean about the long trip and keeping her happy where she can see you (I have felt that same way many cross state trips from S.F. to L.A.) but the risk is NOT worth it. For a long trip you should actually have her in the safest seat possible.

I do not even let my 11 year old 5'4 son ride in the front seat--because I have heard several times recently that children under 16 have a much higher risk of spinal injury or death than an adult riding in that seat (their bones are not yet fully matured to be strong enough to survive impact).

Disabling an airbag is tricky and dangerous, too. Children should be kept rear facing (let alone in the back seat--which is obvious) for as long as possible. Many children are still rear facing at 2 years old in order to maximize safety. If your car says NOT to put a rear facing car seat in the front seat, then that is your final answer--no need to investigate further. There could be many variables that you don't know about that could go into that warning. Put her in the back seat.

I will never forget driving on 19th ave. in San Francisco (a very slow street) when a young woman got into a minor rear ender crash. It was so small that it barely left a dent on her car. I was in the car right next to her. She had her one year old daughter in the front seat (she said she disabled the air bag, but for some reason it deployed anyway) and her daughter died from the crash.
post #36 of 89
This is from www.parentcenter.com

Question: When can my child safely ride in the front seat of a car?

Answer: The answer in almost every case is not until he's at least 13 — and passenger safety organizations such as SafetyBeltSafe U.S.A. recommend going even further and keeping your child in the backseat until he's ready to drive himself.

Why? Because riding in the front seat simply isn't as safe as riding in the back. Buckling a child into the backseat instead of the front reduces by a third his risk of death in a collision. In a head-on crash (the most common — and deadly — type of collision), a child in the front seat can be thrown into your car's dashboard or through the windshield. Even if he's properly buckled in, he's at much greater risk for being harmed by objects intruding into the car in the front than in the back.

What's more, in cars with passenger air bags (which includes most newer models), the air bags deploy with such force that they can cause severe head and neck injuries to a child. Nationwide, more than a hundred children have been killed by air bags in recent years, and many of these deaths were in slow-speed collisions that should have been minor. Infants and toddlers in rear-facing car seats are at extreme risk from air bags when placed in the front seat because the back of their car seat is so close to the dashboard.

If, despite these very real dangers, you absolutely must put a non-rear-facing child in the front seat, check to see whether your car's air bag has an on-off switch, and if so, turn it off. If not, have an air-bag switch installed by a car dealership or one of the specialized companies that have sprung up to deal with this situation. (The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration maintains a list of companies that install air bag on-off switches; you'll need to get permission from this government organization before installing such a switch, however.) If you can't disable your passenger air bag, then have the child who's most securely restrained in a front-facing car seat with a full harness (in other words, the child who's least likely to wiggle out of his restraints, or, if your passengers have all moved out of the car seat phase, your biggest or tallest passenger) ride in the front seat, and move his seat as far back from the dashboard as possible.
post #37 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by RubyWild
I'm curious, I keep my 4 year old's car seat in the center of the back seat - despite enormous inconvenience - because it is by far the safest place in the car to sit. Is that what you do?
I have 2 kids so having either of them in the middle of the back is not an option. I say it doesn't matter if it's illegal in all the states if it's legal in your state. What are the chances you will get pulled over anyway? And if so it's legal in your state and you can tell the officer that. I highly doubt that you get a ticket anyway. What are parents suppose to do if they only have a two seater? When DH and I were separtated he drove a CRX so no back seat was an option.

I would suggest strapping everything down in the back so they can't fly around should you need to slam on your breakes.
post #38 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by RubyWild
I'm curious, I keep my 4 year old's car seat in the center of the back seat - despite enormous inconvenience - because it is by far the safest place in the car to sit. Is that what you do?
Yeah, we definitely do. And, thanks to Dallas C., we got a Britax Marathon because I honestly don't think booster seats look too particularly safe and I'm paranoid. We have a Prizm, so anyone who sits in back is kind've jammed in there, but hey -- if there's a "safest place" in a car, wherever that would happen to be, however much she or I or anyone might personally dislike it, that's where she'll go. To heck with my convenience.
post #39 of 89
Charles B....THANK YOU for that.
post #40 of 89

the front passenger seat used to be the norm for infant seats

Until the mid to late 90's, when front passenger airbags became standard in cars, It was always advised that an infant under 20lbs and riding rear facing be placed in the FRONT passenger seat.

This was stressed repeatedly in all literature provide to consumers on car seats. At that time, one reason cited was a young infant could stop breathing and no one would know if there was no one else in the backseat another was so a mom didn’t have to try and reach into the backseat while driving to soothe a child.

From the 80’s up into the mid/late 90’s, it was absolutely the norm to put an infant in the front passenger seat.
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