Car seat placement advice

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Kate83's picture
Joined: 01/04/11
Posts: 587
Car seat placement advice

We have an 8 passenger van, but both the middle seats in the second and third row only have a lap belt.

DS#1 is in a booster "on island" (in the radian when we leave the island)
DS#2 is in the radian
baby will be in an infant carrier

I am wondering is ds1 in the booster should be in the third row, since he can buckle and unbuckle himself, I would remove the middle row middle seat so he can in and out of the van without climbing, then ds2 and baby will be in the outside middle row seats.

My concern is getting the babies carried tightly installed with just the lap belt, I have tried a couple time and neither were to my satisfaction. But the outer seats have latch to use.

I just have this fear of ds1 being all the way in the third row...like if we were in an accident I couldnt get to him fast enough. Am I being silly?

Does anyone know if there is a way to get a base super tight with a lap belt? do they make any gadgets??

I know at some point someone will have to go to the back row, once baby is in a forward facing seat (age 2) there wont be enough shoulder belts up front for my older boys who will both be in boosters (they will be 7&8 )

Joined: 07/15/07
Posts: 630

I think they say you should put the child who is 'least protected' by his car seat into the safest seat and the child who is 'most protected' by his car seat should be in the least safe seat. I think. There's a car seat safety board on pg.org, I'm sure someone there would be happy to answer your questions. Or you can try to find a local car seat inspection site and let them give you advice on the best placement.

irishgirl's picture
Joined: 04/10/07
Posts: 1043

"rbrooks14332" wrote:

I think they say you should put the child who is 'least protected' by his car seat into the safest seat and the child who is 'most protected' by his car seat should be in the least safe seat. I think. There's a car seat safety board on pg.org, I'm sure someone there would be happy to answer your questions. Or you can try to find a local car seat inspection site and let them give you advice on the best placement.

this is correct. Smile

I think I'd try to get everyone in with either latch or a shoulder belt though. Check http://www.car-seat.org/ for information about lap belts though. You could do a search for "radian lap belt" and get some information hopefully. Smile

Joined: 01/08/09
Posts: 1023

"irishgirl" wrote:

this is correct. Smile

I think I'd try to get everyone in with either latch or a shoulder belt though. Check http://www.car-seat.org/ for information about lap belts though. You could do a search for "radian lap belt" and get some information hopefully. Smile

I second the car-seat.org website. Their forum is amazing. Very knowledgable & helpful people on there.

K_Lo's picture
Joined: 11/16/07
Posts: 1201

I agree that that web site is incredibly helpful! They recommend that the largest child, who is the least protected by his seat, be in the most protected position. But that sounds like it isn't possible with your van only having lap belts in the center. Could you just keep him in the radian rather than the booster?

They do make devices that tighten seat belts for car seats, but car seat techs recommend you don't use them. They can damage the seat belt and make it even less safe. I'd say just keep the infant carrier outboard where you can get a tight fit :).

Kate83's picture
Joined: 01/04/11
Posts: 587

I pulled that middle seat out yesterday, one with just a lap belt (so the 3 kids I was watching to get in out of van easier) and I was able to install the base super super tight, by straddeling it, lol. Hopefully I'll be able to do this again with the seat actually in the van.

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