They’ve only just touched down in New Zealand and already the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are under fire for their parenting choices
Kate and Wills have begun their much-publicised royal tour of New Zealand, with their eight-month-old son in tow. But, having only just started their tour, it appears the royal family is already in hot water with the country’s residents and national childcare advisory agency, Plunket.
The agency released photos of one its staff fitting a Maxi-Cosi car seat into the vehicle that is transporting the royal family during their time in New Zealand.
The baby seat, which Kensington Palace confirmed was chosen by Kate and Wills, faces forward. So, it doesn’t comply with Plunket’s guidelines that state children should sit in rear-facing seats until the age of two to minimise the chance of whiplash in an accident.
The baby seat, which Kensington Palace confirmed was chosen by Kate and Wills, faces forward
The New Zealand Transport Agency’s guidelines aren’t as cautious and state that children from ‘about one year old’ can use forward-facing car seats. But Prince George, at eight months old, is still considered too young.
However in the UK, the law states that parents can use forward-facing car seats if their baby weighs 9kg or more.
But the direction of the car seat isn’t the only black mark for the royal family. According to Maxi-Cosi, the Tobi car seat shouldn’t be used for babies under nine months old – and Prince George is still a few weeks off.
'The Maxi-Cosi Tobi complies with R44/04 regulations which means it is appropriate for a child weighing nine to 18kgs (approximately nine months to four years of age) which we are clear about in our guidance in the UK,' says a spokesperson from Maxi-Cosi. 'The Maxi-Cosi Tobi is a forward-facing seat. However, Maxi-Cosi supports the concept of ‘rearward-facing for longer’ and would encourage parents not to rush their children into forward-facing.'
George’s car seat has caused debate in New Zealand, with one mum writing on Plunket’s Facebook page, ‘is it because they are royals that you seem to think rules don’t apply?’. But Plunket’s chief executive Jenny Prince has made is clear that it’s not a ‘legal requirement’ that children ‘stay in rear-facing seats until age two’. Instead, it’s simply ‘recommended.’
Whatever age your baby is, take a look at the car seats that have been tried and tested by M&B readers.
What factors mattered to you when choosing your baby’s car seat? Let us know in the comments box below.