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Old 09-21-2018, 08:18 AM   #1
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Child retraints / car seats

Safety for children in RV question. We're taking the kids to Disney, and I'm not sure where to put them. (Ages 5 and 9, both distance runners, so very thin)
Articles say that you can't use car seats with bench seats or rear facing seats. (our rig has the two benches (with the table), and a couch, all of which have lap belts, all of which, pulled as tight as they can possibly go, leave about 14" between their waists and the belt, so they are virtually useless).

What are my options? If they're on the couch, they'll go through the windshield, if they're on the bench, the table will destroy them/go flying through the windshield. Is the bed over the drivers a safer option for them? (although, not technically legal in most states) Taking a separate vehicle is not an option, at this point. I realize there's no super safe resolution keeping them in the RV, but of my options, what's the safest?

Maybe there's an option I haven't considered??
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Old 09-21-2018, 08:37 AM   #2
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What if you use booster seats? Does that take up some of the slack in the belt. Although the 9YO may be too big. Maybe get shorter belts, or see about repositioning them. I would put mine at the bench seat with table for sure. PLUS they can do activities on the table while driving.
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Old 09-21-2018, 08:46 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AdeleMc View Post
What if you use booster seats? Does that take up some of the slack in the belt. Although the 9YO may be too big. Maybe get shorter belts, or see about repositioning them. I would put mine at the bench seat with table for sure. PLUS they can do activities on the table while driving.
The boosters help a little, (my 9yo still uses one in the car, and actually doesn't mind the booster because he can sleep more comfortably in it - he's not quite 60lbs yet) but I was just reading that they are not supposed to be used with a lap only system. (I'm not sure the reasoning.)
I will call the dealership and see if they can install shorter belts. I hadn't thought of that!!
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Old 09-21-2018, 10:06 AM   #4
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I plan to put both of mine (3yo/infant) rear facing at the dinette which is directly behind the drivers seat. Bottom line is, there is no safe place in the coach. Do the best you can and drive safely.
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Old 09-21-2018, 03:04 PM   #5
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Donít know if itís the best or safest option, but has worked well for us over the last several years. My kids are now 7 and 5.

Car seats surely arenít safe strapped sideways (couch), nor are they secure mounted backwards on the table bench seat as there is no way to hold the front of the seat down. The only hope there is the seat back cushion or passenger seat would keep them from flying forward.

I have always dropped the table and secured the car seats to the forward facing bench seat. I strap each seat in with the lap belt over my kids, then use the latch connector to secure the top of the car seat to the metal tube under the bench seat. Not as safe as a regular car/truck due to the latch points, but thought it was the safest option for us in the RV.

Ever seen what happens to an RV after an accident/rollover? With that in mind and knowing chances are not good outside of the cab, i just try to keep a safe driving speed of 60-65 (sometimes that still seems fast) and hope for the best.

Tire maintenance is #1 for me. I had my first blowout on 5 year old tires a couple months ago and it wasnít pretty with damage to my Greyhawk. Luckily it was a rear tire and I was only doing 50 without my family inside.
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Old 09-21-2018, 03:09 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biggdave92 View Post
I plan to put both of mine (3yo/infant) rear facing at the dinette which is directly behind the drivers seat. Bottom line is, there is no safe place in the coach. Do the best you can and drive safely.
Youíll find while trying this, that there is no good way to secure the front of the seat to the bench without some modification of the tubular structure beneath. You will be able to lift the front up. This depends on the type of seat you are using, however.
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