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I-Size is a new European-wide car seat regulation (the ﬁrst phase of a safety standard called R129), which aims to make car seats safer. It’s designed to keep children rear-facing for longer, provide better side impact protection and make car seats easier to ﬁt correctly. Under the older regulations, car seats only have to be tested for protection against accidents where the front or back of the car is hit. They don’t have to offer side impact protection, even though around 25% of car accidents involve a car being hit on the side. i-Size now legally requires car seats to ensure side impact protection. i-Size also aims to reduce the confusion around car seat suitability. Under the older regulations they’re categorised by weight. However, one e.g. 9-month-old baby may have a very different weight to another. i-Size requires children to sit rear-facing until they’re at least 15 months old. This is because studies show it’s safer and that rear-facing car seats can offer up to 75% more protection if your young child is involved in a car accident.
Please also see our section about safer rear-facing travelling: https://swandoo.com/rearfacing/ i-Size currently requires the use of ISOFIX as it can reduce the risk of incorrectly installing your seat. This is the biggest safety problem around car seat use – as evidence suggests that up to 75% of car seats are not ﬁtted correctly. A new type of more innovative crash test dummy is being used to test i-Size car seats (they’re called Q rather than P dummies). The new version has more sensors, higher sensitivity and better reﬂects how a child’s body would react in an accident.