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|CARES (for “Child Aviation
Restraint System”) is an innovative belt-and-buckle harness
safety device that attaches directly to the airplane seat belt. It is the first
alternative airplane child safety system to be certified by the FAA
for all phases of flight – taxiing, take off, turbulence and landing.
The CARES airplane safety restraint harness is for children
between 22 and 44 pounds, and sitting in their own seat. CARES
weighs only 1 pound and installs in just 1 minute!
|On August 14, 2006, the FAA Rule permitting CARES to be brought on board planes by parents became effective. On August 30, 2006, CARES was certified for use on all United States commercial and private aircraft. The FAA notes that CARES is the only alternative to an FAA-certified car seat permitted on planes for children who weigh between 22 and 44 pounds sitting in their own seats.|
The regulations allow that a child
�who has not reached their 2nd birthday MAY be held by an adult who is occupying a seat.
The same regulation allows for the child to be in an approved child restraint system (CRS)
A child who is held by an adult has less protection in an accident than any piece of galley equipment on that airplane
In an accident occupants typically experience 20g's or 20 times their weight
A 20 pound child will react with a moving force of 400 pounds - there is no way you will be able to hold on to them
Strapping them into your seat belt will cause them to sustain fatal internal injuries and is illegal
The only option is to put them into an approved CRS
What's NOT approved
Vest / Harness-type CRS's
Belt-positioning booster seats
�Approved CRS's have a label that states:
�This restraint is certified for use in motor vehicles and aircraft�
If your child is:
Under 20 LBS - use a rear facing CRS
20 to 40 LBS - use forward facing CRS
Over 40 LBS - use the seat belt with no CRS
Ask airline if they offer a discounted fare for a child traveling in a CRS
A CRS should be placed in a window seat so it will not block the escape path
CRS�s will not be allowed in an Exit Row
Check the width of your CRS, if wider than 16 inches is unlikely to fit into a coach seat
If you do not purchase a ticket for your child, check with the airline and avoid flights during their busiest times
In many cases the airlines will allow you to use a CRS in an empty seat without having to pay a fare, however check with the airline for their policy regarding an empty seat, prior to booking the flight
|In a study comparing persons fatally injured in aircraft in 1980 and 1990, blunt injury (in particular, head injury) from deceleration forces was the most important threat to survival. Head injuries were listed as the immediate cause of death in 33% of those younger than 15 years. As with other forms of transportation, effective restraint systems decrease the probability of head injury.
Turbulence is the leading cause of nonfatal injuries to aircraft passengers and flight attendants. From 1981 through 1997, there were 342 reports of turbulence affecting major airlines. Three passengers died, 80 had serious injuries, and 769 had minor injuries.
A child on the lap of an adult cannot be effectively restrained in a motor vehicle or aircraft crash. A child who travels on the lap of another occupant or unrestrained in a motor vehicle has a substantially greater risk of injury and death, compared with a restrained child. Hazards associated with the on-lap position are also well documented in aircraft crash investigations. Three children on the laps of adults were fatally injured and others nonfatally injured in the 1987 crash in Denver, CO, the 1989 crash in Sioux City, IA, and the 1994 crash in Charlotte, NCwhich were all caused by turbulence. The NTSB has reported 2 crashes in which CSSs were used and provided protection to children
britax car seats are FAA approved for plane travel as are many others. Do you honestly think I just lug a car seat around an airplane and airport for the heck of it? It is not for some "imagined" safety standard. Turbulence is NOT always announced by the pilots. Plane seats are CPR's, child passenger restraints (the very same car seats you use in a car that are approved by the FAA). A crash is a crash, BUT turbulence is turbulence and it does kill and it does injure. Also, emergency landings can kill and injure. In those cases, a child passenger restraint would help a great deal. I have not found my child's restraint to be bulky and out of place on a plane, it was the safest way for him to fly on an airplane, and so we did that. It wasn't so awful, but then we are prepared to make his flight as safe as we can. Most times on airplanes these days there are no extra seats available for folks to stretch out and use two seats to take a nap. Folks who try to do lap babies are in for a rude awakening when they end up strangers next to them who are less than pleased that they are sharing a row meant for 3 people with four people instead. Bringing a car seat along is not a financial burden, they are not counted as luggage usually, and I would never rely on a car rental place to give me a proper seat for my child. I took a train once, and forgot the seat, and tried getting one from the car rental place, they tried giving me an infant restraint for my 2 yo, then a booster, then a very old seat with no book or instructions on how to properly install it. I asked them to borrow a better seat from a competing company, and finally found a reasonable seat, but it was not ideal, and I will never do that again. Now I travel with our own seat. I hardly call your post data, if you want data, there is some below. The FAA, the NTSB, the AAP, and the NHTSA all recommend children to use child passenger restraints aboard airplanes.
I haven't flown internationally, but have made several flights with babies/toddlers within the US. My observations:
*the airline wants you to check the carseat.
*the flight attendents are not happy to have to deal with you getting a bulky car seat to fit in the small airplane seats.
*ditto on any passengers who may be sitting near you - although in my experience, the car seat must be on the window so as not to restrict anyone getting out in case of emergency, but of course, you will be in the middle seat next to the car seat. However, the person in front of you cannot recline because the car seat and/or toddler's legs/feet are in the way.
*actually getting you, the toddler, the carseat, the luggage, your carryons, etc. from your car to the airplane is a nightmare. If you have more than one adult, it isn't as bad - but I'd never take a car seat if I was the only adult. Been there, done that - ugh.
*almost no one takes car seats. Every time I've flown with kids, my kids are the only ones on the plane that have car seats.
I can appreciate the "my kid is going to be as safe as possible/I'm going to prepare for every possibility/will deal with any amount of stress to make that happen" argument. I thought that way too - when I had only one kid.
On the flip side, I can imagine that the rental car car seats leave quite a bit to be desired. And that many kids would sleep better in their car seat. So IF I were to take a car seat on a plane (I really don't think I'll ever do this again - dd3 is almost four), I'd buy/borrow something small/lightweight. NO WAY that my Britax Wizards are going on a plane... Honestly, the seat next to it would have only partial room, and we all know that you are squeezed in as it is.
I had no idea so many people used car seats on planes for toddlers. Granted I don't fly much now, but I flew all the time growing up and in my pre-kid adult years, and I rarely encountered turbulence. I guess I don't understand why it's so much safer (since most crashes would result in death for everyone), or at least safer enough to the degree that it's worth the pita. Though I can see those stats up above. It's just that ime the child being restless chance is like, 100% (have only flown once with him though), and ime the turbulence chance is not so high.
|Though I can see those stats up above. It's just that ime the child being restless chance is like, 100% (have only flown once with him though), and ime the turbulence chance is not so high.|
I said it earlier and I don't mean to say I told her so, but the OP talked about how her daughter was restless on her 14 hour flight and slept for only 6 hours, so she didn't take the car seat, and her daughter barely slept. I pointed out before that return flight that perhaps it might end up being that way, that without a car seat a child would be less likely to sleep.
Just wanted to respond to a few things, as we've flow a lot over the last 2.5 years (DD took 22 flights by the time she was two).
*the airline wants you to check the carseat. Nope. Never had anyone with the airline tell me they wanted us to check the seat. In fact, we are always getting comments on how nice it is to see parents bringing the car seat on.
*the flight attendents are not happy to have to deal with you getting a bulky car seat to fit in the small airplane seats. Again, we've only ever had positive comments regarding the seat from airline employees. Flight attendants also go out of their way to assist us when necessary.
*ditto on any passengers who may be sitting near you - although in my experience, the car seat must be on the window so as not to restrict anyone getting out in case of emergency, but of course, you will be in the middle seat next to the car seat. However, the person in front of you cannot recline because the car seat and/or toddler's legs/feet are in the way. Nope. The seats always recline in front of us. Even in those little 50 person planes. If the seat were rear facing this may be an issue. Also, I always sit next to DD in the middle (as you said, they have to be in a window) so we've never been a bother to other passengers.
*actually getting you, the toddler, the carseat, the luggage, your carryons, etc. from your car to the airplane is a nightmare. If you have more than one adult, it isn't as bad - but I'd never take a car seat if I was the only adult. Been there, done that - ugh. I too did it when I was 38 weeks preggo with DD, so I can relate. Yep, it's a pain.
*almost no one takes car seats. Every time I've flown with kids, my kids are the only ones on the plane that have car seats. I have seen quite a few car seats on planes actually (I travel for business as well so tend to fly a bit). All of my IRL friends also travel w/ their car seats. I of course see as many lap babies.
Just my experience - I wanted to show the other side as well, for moms who may be on the fence about this issue. We've always had a very good experience with the car seats on planes. Granted, I usually fly with DH so that makes it easier. Alone is tough!
Believe me.... it is TOTALLY different on non US carriers. The OP was flying internationally.
Hi- don't mind hijaking at all. If I was you I would just take your seat. She's used to it, you know how to install it, you'll be assured it will make it there with you, etc. I'm going to buy a lightwt seat so I always have one with me when flying with DD until she's over 40lb.
To those of you who have no complaints about bringing the car seat, what kinda things did you do, or do you recommend to make it flow easier, etc?
To those of you who have no complaints about bringing the car seat, what kinda things did you do, or do you recommend to make it flow easier, etc?
We bring the stroller- carseat goes on stroller, dd goes on my back. We pre-board if possible and put the carseat in. Get a belt extender as you board. Makes installing and uninstalling the seat much easier.
there is a trick with the seat belt as well, is to turn it so the latch to undo it is backwards, so you can reach it and it doesn't get stuck in the car seat. I always use bungee cords or the latch attachment to attach the car seat to my stroller. Put the kid on me (sling or ergo) or sometimes even in the seat (it worked when he was older), pre-board, ask for help if needed, if just asking someone to hold the baby while you put the seat in. I rear faced my kid on airplanes till me was 1, and if the flight attendant gives you a hard time about that (sometimes people complain about not being able to recline) have them look up their own regulations. Make sure you are not in an exit aisle as well.
Oh, and ask for a seat belt extender, makes it easier.
I posted earlier about the GoGoKidz attachment that we have for the carseat. DS likes to pull it around the airport while we hold the carryons. If he tires of pulling it, I just pile the carryons in the carseat.
Here is DS pulling his carseat at 20mo, I think, before a redeye flight (hence the PJs) from West Coast to East Coast. He slept the entire way, no problems. We didn't bother with the stroller on this trip.
I get the seatbelt extender as well from the flight attendent while boarding. Sometimes it takes them a while to get it, but it's worked out pretty well.
DH is in the process of rigging up a tray for DS for our 13 hour flight next week. You can't generally use the tray table with the carseat. He's using a wooden puzzle. I'll let you know how it turns out.
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