A new innovation in child car seats could reduce head and neck injuries in vehicle collisions. Car seat manufacturer Maxi-Cosi has today launched the first forward-facing car seat with built-in airbags.
UK law demands that children under a certain age and height travel in an appropriate car seat, as seatbelts and restraints are designed to work on adults, rather than children. Maxi-Cosi's new seat features airbags located in the seat's shoulder pads, which prevent the occupant's heads from snapping forward in a collision.
Maxi-Cosi says the bags can inflate within 0.05 seconds, and automatically deflate 1 second after the impact. They're filled by a CO2 cartridge stored in the back of the seat.
Andrew Ratliffe, Managing Director of Maxi-Cosi, said: "Child safety is mostly dependent on car seat legislation... real innovations need to come from our industry. To develop a new standard, Maxi-Cosi teamed up with Helite, a French company specialised in mobile airbag technology.
"Our Maxi-Cosi Air Safety technology will lower the impact of an accident to a child's neck and head in a forward-facing child car seat, resulting in better safety for toddlers."
The first seat to feature the airbag tech will be the Maxi-Cosi AxissFix Air. It can be used for forward or rear-facing travel, and is suitable for children between 62 and 105 centimetres tall. It has an RRP of £550.
By law in the UK, children under 135cm tall must travel in a car seat, and must be rear-facing until they are at least 15 months old.