CPS Team Colorado District One news Safe Ride News & CPS board updates a tech can use..

  • From: camie wewer <cjwewer@xxxxxxx>
  • To: <cjwewer@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 11 Feb 2011 19:08:30 -0700

Copied below is some information from SafeRideNews and the CPS Board Tech 
Update page.  Please take a moment and read through the articles.  SafeRideNews 
has very useful information with tech updates, updates to the LATCH manual as 
well as other resources for Child Passenger Safety technicians.  Here is the 
link for more 

Winter Child Restraint UpdateSome Manufacturers Step Outside the Box to Create 
Innovative CRs   Imagine CRs that tighten without effort and tell you when they 
are installed tightly and reclined correctly. What if you could install a 
detachable base correctly when a baby was first discharged from the hospital 
and continue to use the base with an appropriate CR until the child reached 65 
pounds? What if harness systems were improved to accommodate taller and heavier 
kids and still effectively control head excursion? And imagine voluntary 
manufacturer CR testing, demonstrating to NHTSA that improved side and frontal 
standards that reflect more realistic conditions, are completely feasible.
   These are some of the innovative ideas that CR manufacturers have been 
imagining.  Some have already become reality in brand new CR models, and still 
others are poised to debut in early 2011. More companies are using pre-launch 
focus groups with parents and advocates to help guide designers to products 
that better meet the needs of real-world caregivers. And, though there are 
still no federal requirements for performance in side impacts, much focus 
continues on side-impact testing. Absent federal guidelines, these voluntary 
side-impact test methods vary.   Many of these tests suggest CRs (including 
highback boosters) can be designed to better contain and protect children. 
Testing for frontal crash performance in conditions far more severe than those 
required by federal standards also has become common. 
   This winter update takes a look at some of the new and upcoming CR 
offerings. It has been compiled through SRN representation at the ABC Kids Expo 
(Emilie Crown and Joe Colella) and through direct contact with manufacturers. 
This article focuses mainly on those that are either already on the market or 
expected in the next few months, although many other exciting new products are 
in the early development stages (see Other Brands to Watch in 2011 
below).Highlights by Manufacturer
   Listing does not imply a recommendation by SRN or by the author.  
Manufacturers are listed alphabetically. Availability is affected by many 
factors, and there may be significant changes to products before final 
production actually begins. As always, refer to manufacturers’ instructions for 
the most accurate information about any CR.
   Britax has redesigned all of its convertibles, now called the Next 
Generation line.  All CRs in this line go to 40 pounds in the rear-facing mode.
   The new convertibles were developed to lower the child’s center of gravity, 
thereby improving stability and reducing head excursion. The shells are now 
reinforced with steel bars to add strength. The base portions of the CRs 
include material that crushes during a crash to absorb some of the force. 
   Lock-offs have been redesigned and are now inside the belt path area. Unlike 
previous designs, the seat belt is tightened after the lock-off is closed and 
locked. Though original Next Generation CRs required use of both lock-offs for 
RF and FF seat belt installations, the CRs have since been redesigned to allow 
the use of only a single lock-off rather than both, due to incompatibility with 
some seat belt features. CRs made prior to July 30, 2010, have a conversion kit 
available. Those made between July 31 and October 4, 2010, are ready to use 
with a single lock-off, but parents should request updated instructions.  Those 
made on or after October 5, 2010, are ready to use with a single lock-off and 
also have the updated instructions. For details, go to 
Roundabout 55—$199
Convertible: RF 5–40 lbs.; FF 20–55 lbs.
Now available 
   This is a redesign of the Roundabout 50, but the original will remain 
available as the Roundabout 50 Classic (with a maximum weight of 50 pounds). 
Both still require rethreading to adjust harness height. 
Marathon 70—$279
Convertible: RF 5–40 lbs.; FF 20–70 lbs.
Now available
   As with the Roundabout 50, a Marathon Classic is still available (with a 
maximum weight of 65 pounds). Both Marathons include harness height adjustment 
without rethreading and have nonhanded connectors, so the lower attachment will 
no longer need to be switched from one side of the CR to the other when 
converting between rear- and forward-facing modes.
Boulevard 70 and 70 CS—$309–$329
Convertible: RF 5–40 lbs.; FF 20–70 lbs.
Now available
   The Boulevard 70 has an additional side-impact protection layer near the 
head, a no-rethread harness, and nonhanded connectors (see description for this 
feature under Marathon 70, above). The CS version also includes the Click & 
Safe feature that notifies the user when proper harness snugness is attained 
with an audible click.
Advocate 70 CS—$369
Convertible: RF 5–40 lbs.; FF 20–70 lbs.
Now available
   In addition to the features of the Boulevard 70 CS, the Advocate 70 CS has 
energy-absorbing cushions on the exterior of the shell.  Britax reports that 
the cushions reduce side-impact crash energy by as much as 45 percent.
Parkway SGL—$149
BPB: Highback 40–120 lbs.; Backless 40–120 lbs.
Now available
   This booster features a lower attachment connection system for crash 
stability and to prevent it from becoming a projectile when not in use. The BPB 
can be secured and adjusted from either side with two clicks and a pull. In 
highback mode, it has a side-impact protection layer close to the child’s head 
and wings in the torso section. It also has a new version of the SecureGuard 
crotch strap—now a single strap rather than a V-strap—to prevent submarining 
under the lap belt and to minimize the risk of abdominal injury.
Infant CR: RF 4–30 lbs.
Now available
   The base has been improved so a proper angle can be achieved on flatter 
vehicle seats. Due to theChaperone’s design, Britax says that more than 20 
percent of the base may overhang the vehicle seat as long as the installation 
is snug.
   Combi is not introducing any new CR platforms, but the company continues to 
improve existing models and instructions. Note: Although there have been many 
verbal reports that the Coccoro will be the first convertible CR in the U.S. to 
have a minimum RF weight of 3 pounds, all current instructions and website 
information continue to state a minimum of 5 pounds.
Infant CR: RF Birth–35 lbs.
Available early 2011
   Combi intends to do away with descriptors like Shuttle 22 and Shuttle 33. 
All new Shuttle models will accommodate infants up to 35 pounds and 33 inches, 
as long as the child’s head is at least 1 inch below the top of the shell.  
This change is not retroactive.
   Dorel Juvenile Group is developing innovative crash protection features 
while aiming to keep most models priced very affordably. The company now has 
three crash test sleds running in its new Technical Center for Child Safety—one 
that runs compliance tests, another that runs the Dorel-Kettering side-impact 
tests (with 16 to 18 inches of simulated vehicle intrusion), and a third for 
tests with extreme crash forces. In addition, a team at the center is dedicated 
to computer-simulated testing.
   The new facility is also committed to recycling, reusing scrap plastics and 
other materials for making non-load-bearing parts of CRs and other products. It 
is a zero-waste facility.
Comfy Carry—$59–$79
Infant CR: RF 4–22 lbs.
Available late 2010
   At less than 6 pounds, the Comfy Carry is touted as the lightest-weight 
infant CR on the market, a feature that is intended to make it more comfortable 
for carrying a baby. It will have a lowest harness slot height of 5 inches, 
three crotch strap positions, buckle length adjustability, and hook-on LATCH 
connectors with a pocket for storage. Recline angle adjustment, if necessary, 
must be made using rolled towels or a foam noodle with the most basic model, 
which will have no built-in adjuster on the base. (The more expensive Elite 
version, at the top of the price range, will include an adjustable base, a head 
pillow, and front harness adjustment.)
Scenera 40RF—$49
Convertible: RF 5–40 lbs.; FF 22–40 lbs.
Now available
   This design is currently only available at Target, but will become available 
from other retailers in late 2011. It is structurally different from the 
Scenera, though it has many similar features—four sets of harness slots that 
require rethreading when changed, three crotch strap positions, and hook-on 
LATCH connectors. The main improvement is its ability to accommodate children 
both rear and forward facing up to its maximum harness limit of 40 pounds.
onSide Air—$79
Convertible: RF 5–40 lbs.; FF 22–40 lbs.
Now available
   The onSide Air is similar to a Scenera 40RF (see above), but with a 
combination of foam and air bladders along the sides for increased side-impact 
protection. Unlike the Complete Air and other Air Protect designs, this model 
does not have bladders in the head area.  
Complete Air 65—$179
Convertible: RF 5–40 lbs.; FF 22–65 lbs.
Now available
   The shell of this model’s predecessor has been redesigned structurally and 
for better vehicle fit. The former version that could be used to 50 pounds will 
be phased out and fully replaced by this model. The Complete Air 65 introduces 
a new feature—pads to provide friction between the harness and child for better 
crash performance. (These harness pads will be added to other Dorel models, as 
well.) The harness height adjusts without rethreading, LATCH connectors are the 
push-on style, and there are side-impact protection bladders close to the head 
and along the torso.
Alpha Omega Elite—$159
3-in-1: RF 5–35 lbs.; FF 22–50 lbs.; Highback BPB 40–100 lbs.
Now available
   This new version is being phased in, and the base portion has been 
redesigned to improve installations using LATCH lower attachments. This CR also 
features the new harness friction pads launched with the Complete Air 65.
Boost Air Protect—$79
BPB: Highback 30–100 lbs.; Backless 40–100 lbs.
Now available
   This booster features side-impact protection technology in the highback 
mode. It has been tested and developed with the required child dummies, as well 
as with the 5th-percentile adult female. The back has eight height adjustment 
positions and is also removable.
   Note on the onBoard infant CR:  Dorel will phase in a uniform minimum weight 
limit of 4 pounds for all new models. Upper limits will still vary depending on 
specific model.  Always check the label and owner’s manual.
   Evenflo has enhanced crash performance with the newly developed E Side 
Impact protection system: three layers of crushable foam with different 
densities and functions placed along the CR sides. The company states that, 
with this feature, the lateral impact forces experienced by a child in a 
side-impact collision are reduced by 50 percent. The Momentum 65 and some 
Symphony models are the first to feature this technology. 
Big Kid Sport—$29
BPB: Highback 30–100 lbs.; Backless 40–100 lbs.
Available in early 2011
   The Big Kid Sport is an Amp with an adjustable and removable back. It will 
at first be exclusively sold by Walmart. 
   Graco has a new 3-in-1 with a removable base that stays installed in the 
car, the first of its kind in the U.S. Conducting focus groups, including 
sessions with parents and with advocates, has helped the company iron out usage 
issues during the development process.
3-in-1: RF 5–40 lbs.; FF 20–65 lbs.; Highback 30–100 lbs.
Available in early 2011
   With this new system, you can learn to install the base once and never have 
to learn a new installation method as the child grows, since the CR is used 
rear and forward facing on the same base. When used with the CR’s infant 
insert, the lowest harness height is under 8 inches, so the CR is expected to 
fit many newborns.  The CR has locking indicators to verify that it is 
correctly attached to the base, and all five recline levels can be used either 
rear or forward facing. There is a six-position headrest, and the harness 
height adjusts without rethreading. The shell is reinforced with steel bars.
   When converting to BPB mode, the base is removed (no tools required), and 
the harness is easily stored within the shell.
SnugRide 30—$119–139
Infant CR: RF 4–30 lbs.
Now available
Other SnugRide models are being phased out in favor of this new version. To 
better accommodate preemies, the minimum weight is 4 pounds, the crotch strap 
has two positions, the hip straps can be adjusted, and there is ample padding 
for positioning. There are four sets of harness slots that require rethreading 
to adjust. New seats are shipped with harnesses in the second slots, so 
adjustment will be necessary for use with smaller infants. The base has three 
recline levels and a gravity-based level indicator. 
Harmony Juvenile Products—www.harmonyjuvenile.com
   Harmony reports that its CR designers strive to make BPBs that keep the hips 
and knees contained, reduce torque (rotational force) on the torso and neck, 
and fit well with real vehicle seat contours. 
V6 Youth Booster—$79
BPB: Highback 30–110 lbs.; Backless 30–110 lbs.
Available in early 2011
   The “V” in the name refers to the shape of the base, which is designed to 
fit well with typical vehicle seat slopes. The back is lined with crushable 
foam, and the BPB has a shoulder-belt positioner for use in backless mode. 
Booster: Backless 30–110 lbs.
Available in early 2011
   The model’s name reflects its narrow outside dimensions, and the 
manufacturer claims that three can fit across the back of most vehicles.  A 
shoulder-belt positioner is included for use in backless mode.
Mia Moda—www.miamodainc.com
   After a temporary hiatus, Mia Moda has re-entered the CR market with a new 
infant CR.
Infant CR: RF 4–22 lbs.
Now available
   This basic model includes a full body pillow, four sets of harness slots 
that require rethreading, and hook-on LATCH connectors.
Summer Infant—www.summerinfant.com
   Summer Infant is new to the CR market, but not to juvenile products. By 
partnering with experienced CR designers and advocates, the company will soon 
launch its first CR entry. 
Infant CR: RF 4–32 lbs.
Available in early 2011
  One key feature that sets this model apart from others is an electronic 
monitoring system. Its SmartScreen provides clear instructions to users for 
attaching, leveling, and tightening the base with push-on LATCH connectors or a 
seat belt. Using advanced sensors, the SmartScreen indicates when the user has 
correctly achieved each installation step and can be checked to monitor 
installation on an ongoing basis. The Prodigy also has its own tightening and 
belt-locking system built in, simplifying the installation process. The harness 
system enables caregivers to adjust the harness straps with one hand, both for 
shoulder strap height and snug adjustment. The Prodigy also will include a 
removable body and head support for newborns.
—Joe ColellaOther Brands to Watch in 2011   Some exciting innovations are 
expected from other manufacturers in 2011, though it is too early to report the 
details.  Watch for news from these manufacturers later in the year.
Baby Trend: Working on a highback booster and a HWH convertible CR.
Learning Curve: Developing a new HWH convertible CR.
Peg PÈrego: After years of offering only one infant CR in the U.S. market, the 
company will introduce the Primo Viaggio convertible CR in the spring.
Regal Lager: This U.S. distributor of the CYBEX brand is planning to launch an 
infant CR that will, among other things, accommodate preemies.© Safe Ride News, 
November/December 2010

Tech Update Page from the CPS board is another source of information for CPS 
Technicians.  The current edition includes a summary of recent research done on 
injuries that happen in car seats outside of the vehicle. I have not cut and 
pasted the info here..it is too big.  Be sure and take a look though the 
information is very useful for technicians!


Camie Wewer
CPS Technician/Instructor; Special Needs CPS
CPS Team Colorado Advisory Council Representative District One
Drive Smart Evergreen/Conifer CPS Coordinator*Car Seat Assistance* 
TeachSource @ North Suburban Medical Center Baby On The Go
303 674 9683 DS Office
303 489 4819 Cell 
303 453 2273 NSMC


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  • » CPS Team Colorado District One news Safe Ride News & CPS board updates a tech can use.. - camie wewer