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Question about mini vans....


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Aug 17, 2012, 11:32pm   #1
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Ok so about a month and a half ago I was at a red light and all of a sudden I heard horrible screeching sounds of tires burning against the road and brakes being slammed. I looked in my rearview mirror and a car was coming right for me!!!!

The part that terrified me the most was that my daughter sits in the back of the minivan. My second row is bucket seats and one was removed for easier access for DD to climb in and out.

Anyhow my minivan is typical in the fact that there is maybe 20 - 22 INCHES of space between the back door and my back row bench seat where DD sits.

Needless to say I almost had a heartattack when I thought he was going to hit me, I contemplated jumping the van on the median hoping he would miss us, but I saw him fishtail his car into another lane. I firmly believe DD would have been seriously injured had he hit me.

PRAISE THE LORD GOD, who is so good, He protected my daughter and I and the car just took off, but since then I moved one of my bucket seats into the middle of the van and put her car seat there. Now she loves it bc she's closer to mommy, can see good out the window. But what I don't like is that the seatbelt has to stretch a ways to secure her seat. The seatbelt is locked and the seat doesn't move much but it still worries me.

I know the best place for her is in the back but I am absolutely terrified of being rear ended and unfortunately purchasing another vehicle is absolutely out of the question for me.

What would you ladies do? Move her back into the back and pray to God you never get rear ended or leave her in the middle with the seat belt stretched a little bit (meaning it is as its fullest length).

I'm so confused but scared to move her back. At the same time I want her to be completely safe.

Any advice helps and SORRY sooooooo long. LOL!
Aug 18, 2012, 9:15am   #2
qudz104's Avatar
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Im glad everyone is ok!
How old is your dd? Ive seen many parents put 3+ aged kids in the middle row/bucket seats though safety wise im not sure.
Aug 18, 2012, 9:38am   #3
alliemia's Avatar
love shopping!!!
I would recommend going to a car seat clinic in your area so they can check that you have the seat in a safe position. Also, maybe contact your van's manufacturer to ask where the best placement is. I don't have a van, so not sure if stretching the seatbelt out is safe, I'd venture to say its not a good idea. The seatbelt needs to be tight.
Aug 18, 2012, 10:04am   #4
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Yes, contact the vehicle manufacturer for detailed information because it would be specific to your minivan. In an effort to avoid injury in a rear-end collision, you could be putting your DD in harms way in the event of a front and/or side impact collision.
Aug 18, 2012, 1:58pm   #5
LoveMyBulldogs's Avatar
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Do you use the seatbelt because you don't have the LATCH system? If you used the LATCH then you wouldn't have to use the seatbelt. I know both the LATCH and seatbelt are both very safe.
Aug 18, 2012, 11:11pm   #6
l
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Sorry to hear about the crazy driver. I think you're better off going to a car seat check station to get a great fit on your seat and to get some good advice on seat placement. Here is a link to where you can find one locally (we are in Northern CA and made an appt with our local CHP station)

http://www.nhtsa.gov/cps/CPSFitting/Index.cfm

Otherwise the best online resource is through car seat . org. Be sure when posting your questions to include the make model year of your mini van and your car seat. That will help give them an idea of how to answer your questions.

good luck
Aug 18, 2012, 11:22pm   #7
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Your DD should be fine in the center seats in a minivan, as they are the equivalent of the back seat of a sedan or compact car. The main reason they want kids in the back seats is to avoid air bags, but a child can ride in the front seat of a pickup truck provided the airbag is disabled (although I wouldn't feel comfortable with that). However, I would definitely use the latch system (most semi-recent vans have it) or go to a local carseat check. Call the local hospital and they ought to be able to tell you when there will be a free carseat check and where it is. Some fire stations will check carseats for free anytime.
Aug 19, 2012, 2:33am   #8
MarneeB's Avatar
~One Day At A Time~
I agree with contacting the van's manufacturer to see what is safest. I do think the middle row is fine though, as long as she's not in the front. I'm glad neither of you were hurt, that must have been so frightening! Our fire departments around here have car seat checks every so often, which I think is great.
Aug 21, 2012, 8:58pm   #9
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Thank you so much for the info ladies! I will check tomorrow throug that link and see where i can go to have it checked. The van is an oldsmobile, but that was part of the GM family so maybe they can help me.

As always great advice from you ladies.
Aug 21, 2012, 11:15pm   #10
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Oh sorry forgot to add...dd is 3 1/2
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