In the UK there are currently 2 regulations in place for car seat safety. ECE R44 and ECE R129 (this is what is often referred to as i-Size). Car seats must meet one of these regulations to be deemed safe and acceptable for sale.
So what is R129 and what does it mean?
Unlike R44, seats certified under R129 are classified by the child height in cm. There are no groups like R44.
Children can legally be forward facing in an R129 seat from 15 months, where the seat allows. – NOTE THAT I HAVE SAID LEGALLY AND NOT SAFELY… although this is a big step above R44 (9kg) it is still not what we would consider safe.
There are 3 phases to the implementation of R129.
Phase 1 was implemented in 2013 which covered ISOFIX car seats with an integral harness for children up to 105cm in height.
Phase 2 was implemented in 2017 which included high back booster seats for children from 100cm in height, that can be fitted both with and without t ISOFIX arms.
Phase 3 is currently being implemented and includes seats with an integral harness that are belt fitted.
The crash test for R129 is much the same as the R44 with front impact at 32mph and rear impact at 18mph however it also includes side impact at 15mph.
The other difference is the type of dummy that is use for the crash tests. Unlike the R44 testing, R129 uses Q-dummies which use 32 sensors rather than the 4 on P-dummies, and they are more representative of how the human body moves.
I must stress that neither P or Q dummies have sensors measuring the loads applied to the neck.
Safety is our focus
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