FAQ

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Pregnant

Newborn

Rearward-facing

Forward-facing

2

Could the saftety belt harm the unborn baby?

How should I wear the safety belt?

Our research shows that the best protection for pregnant women and their unborn babies is for the mother to wear her three-point safety belt, and to wear it properly. This significantly reduces the foetal injury risk. Therefore, pregnant women should definitely use a safety belt at all times, right up until the birth itself.

The top of the diagonal belt should be taut against the front of the shoulder, crossing down between the breasts and then down the side of the tummy. The lap section of the belt should be flat against the thighs and below the tummy, as low as possible – it should never be allowed to ride up in front of the tummy. The belt must fit as snugly as possible against the body. Check, too, that there are no twists in the belt.

11

What should I look for when choosing a baby seat?

What do I need to think about when buying a second-hand baby seat?

What is Isofix*?

How do you fit a baby seat?

Is a strapped-in carrycot a safe alternative?

What is the best place in the car for a baby seat?

Can you be sure that the airbag really has been switched off or disabled?

Do side airbags pose any risk to the baby?

Why must babies travel in rearward-facing seats?

How long should we go on using the baby seat?

What should I do if my baby doesn’t want to sit in its seat?

One that is suitable for your type of car, comfortable for your child and fulfills the legal requirements for your country.

Don’t buy a second-hand baby seat unless it is a relatively new one. Baby seat design has evolved fast and modern seats are much safer than old ones. Make sure that any seat you buy is undamaged, has the right type approval label, and that all its fittings and instructions are supplied with it.

A standardised anchorage system for baby and child seats. * The Isofix system is known as LATCH in the United States.

Follow the specific instructions carefully. If you encounter any problems, ask the seat retailer for help.

No. The carrycot may be fixed in place, but the baby inside it will not be properly restrained.

In a Volvo, all passenger seat positions are equally safe, but there will probably be other factors which will influence your choice of location. Many prefer to have their baby within reach, i.e. on the front passenger seat. But if there is an activated passenger airbag in front of that seat, the baby seat must definitely not be installed there. So the back seat is the only option if the front seat has an activated passenger airbag. In some cars, the passenger airbag can be switched off as required. Your car may have a switch for this purpose – check the owner’s handbook for instructions. If there is no switch of this kind, one option is to have the airbag permanently disabled at an authorised dealership. In some countries, such as the United States, a special permit has to be obtained before an airbag may be disabled.

Yes, the Volvo Passenger Airbag Cut Off Switch (PACOS) is very reliable. But you do have to check carefully that the switch is definitely in the OFF position. If you have any doubts about whether the airbag is really disabled, contact your authorised dealership. Check the options for your brand of car and the regulations which apply in your country.

No. In a Volvo, the baby will not come into contact with side airbags if it is correctly strapped into an appropriate rearward-facing child seat.

A baby’s head is large and heavy in relation to the rest of its body, and its neck is still far from fully developed. If the baby were to travel in a forward-facing seat, its neck would be very vulnerable to the forces unleashed on it in the event of a frontal collision.

The most important thing is that the seat used should be suitable for the size and weight of the baby at the time, to give it the support it needs. Depending on the type of seat chosen in the first place, most babies will need to move on to a larger child seat somewhere between the ages of nine and eighteen months, but it is also possible to switch seats earlier than this. When the baby has grown so its head reaches the top end of its baby seat or beyond, the time has come to move it to a rearward-facing seat for a larger child.

Stop and take a break. It can be a good idea to take a brand-new baby seat indoors and let the baby get used to it at home first.

9

How long should children go on using rearward-facing seats?

Why is this so important?

What do I need to think about when buying a child car seat?

How do you fit a rearward-facing child seat?

What is the best place in the car for a child seat?

Can you be sure that the airbag really has been switched off or disabled?

Do side airbags pose any risk to my child?

What should I do if my child doesn’t want to sit in its seat?

What should I do if my child falls asleep with its head hanging at a sharp angle?

Young children should continue to use rearward-facing seats for as long as possible. A child should only switch to a forward-facing seat when it has grown out of its seat or when its head extends beyond the top of the seat. It is recommended that children go on using rearward-facing seats until they are three years old, but preferably longer. The older a child is, the stronger its neck will have grown. In addition, the taller a child is, the smaller its head will be in relation to the rest of its body. Not being able to stretch out its legs fully will not affect the child’s safety.

Because a child’s vulnerable neck cannot withstand the strain involved if the head is flung forward in a frontal collision. In a forward-facing seat, the neck is subjected to high forces. In a rearward-facing seat, these forces are distributed over the whole of the child’s back and head. The forces arising in rear-end collisions are generally not as high.

One that is suitable for your type of car, comfortable for your child and fulfills the legal requirements for your country.

Follow the specific instructions carefully. Isofix is a standardised anchorage system which often makes it easier to fit child car seats. If you encounter any problems, ask the seat retailer for help. Many Volvos have other forms of seat anchorage built into the floor.

In a Volvo, all passenger seat positions are equally safe, but there will probably be other factors which will influence your choice of location. Many prefer to have their child within reach, i.e. on the front passenger seat. But if there is an activated passenger airbag in front of that seat, the child seat must definitely not be installed there. So the back seat is the only option if the front seat has an activated passenger airbag. In some cars, the passenger airbag can be switched off as required. Your car may have a switch for this purpose – check the owner’s handbook for instructions. The alternative is to have the airbag permanently disabled at an authorised dealership. In some countries, such as the United States, a special permit has to be obtained before an airbag may be disabled.

Yes, the Volvo Passenger Airbag Cut Off Switch (PACOS) is very reliable. But you do have to check carefully that the switch is definitely in the OFF position. You can also have the airbag permanently disabled at an authorised dealership. If you have any doubts about whether the airbag is really disabled, contact your authorised dealership. Check the options for your brand of car and the regulations which apply in your country.

No, Volvo side airbags are designed to keep your child from harm in a collision, as long as he or she is travelling in an appropriate rearward-facing child seat. So take care always to strap your child in correctly.

Stop and take a break.

If it appears not to bother the child, it probably looks worse than it is. If it bothers you, you can always stop and prop up the child’s head with a pillow or cushion.

11

When can I move my child to a forward-facing child restraint system?

What should I look for when choosing a booster seat or a booster cushion?

Is a booster cushion just as good as a booster cushion plus backrest?

How do you position the belt correctly?

Should a child ever use an ordinary cushion instead of a booster cushion, perhaps in someone else’s car?

Is it all right for the child to sit on an adult’s lap instead?

Which seat in the car is safest?

How tall does a child have to be to travel in the front passenger seat with a frontal airbag which has not been switched off or disabled?

How long should children go on using a booster seat or a booster cushion?

What do I do if my child won’t sit on the booster cushion?

When the child has grown out of its rearward-facing seat, i.e. when the top of its head is no longer within the child seat, or is touching the top, depending on the type of seat you have. The child should be at least three, and preferably older.

One that is suitable for your type of car, comfortable for your child and fulfills the legal requirements for your country.

Smaller children will generally find that a booster cushion with a backrest is more comfortable for their legs. In cars without head restraints, a booster cushion with a backrest will provide extra support behind the head. If there are side projections built into the top of the child’s backrest, these can help a sleeping child to sit straighter and more securely. Otherwise, provided the safety belt is correctly positioned on the child’s body, the level of protection will be the same, with or without a backrest section for the booster cushion.

The diagonal belt should go down across the shoulder, close to the neck. It doesn’t matter if the belt is partly on the child’s neck. What is dangerous is if the belt is worn too far out on the shoulder. If the worst comes to the worst, the top of the child’s body could slide out over the belt in an accident. For the same reason, you should never let your child wear the diagonal belt under both arms. The lap belt needs to be worn in front of the hips, across the tops of the thighs. For most types of removable booster cushion, the belt needs to be held down by the projections on the booster cushion itself. If not, it could slip up in front of the child’s stomach and cause internal injuries in a collision. There should be no slack present in either the diagonal or the lap belt. Remove any slack after you fasten the child’s belt.

No. An ordinary cushion is too soft. In an accident it could slip forwards or be flattened. The child would risk slipping out beneath the belt. Objects such as telephone directories are not an option either.

No. Children should never be allowed to travel on laps. Each child needs a place of its own in the car, and a suitable form of child restraint.

In a Volvo all seats are equally safe for children, provided they are using a suitable child restraint. The only exception is when the front passenger seat has an airbag which has not been switched off or disabled. No child shorter than 140 cm (approx. 4 ft 7 in) should ever travel in a seat with an activated frontal airbag.

140 centimetres (approx. 4 ft 7 in).

It is difficult to give a precise limit. Today’s booster cushions have been tested and approved for children up to about 140 centimeters in height (up to the age of about ten and a weight of 36 kg or 80 pounds). Most countries have their own specific rules and exceptions. The most important thing in terms of crash safety is that the lap belt should be worn correctly across the hips, even after the child has been traveling in the car for a time and has moved about in the safety belt. There must be no risk of the belt slipping up in front of the stomach in the event of a collision. Factors here will be the child’s size (height and hip size), age (hip development) and the car’s specific belt geometry. Our accident research shows that children aged up to ten should use a booster cushion, but that eleven and twelve-year-olds also benefit from travelling on one.

You must persuade him and her.