Does the Corvette suddenly get safer after your children reach the age of 7 or 8? :huh:
No, but at that point they are bigger and not sitting in booster seats, wearing a regular seatbelt, and the car's safety equipment is more likely designed to protect people their size (my wife and I are both taller than average, and our child is trending that way too, so he'll be pretty big at age 8).
By the way, a child is 37% more likely to die if seated in the front seat instead of the rear seat.
Q. What should I know about children and frontal air bags?
Since the most common type of crash is frontal, the rear seat is generally the safest place for children to ride, regardless of air bags. One study showed that children are up to 37% less likely to die, when seated in the rear than if seated in the front. Most past and current air bags were designed to help protect adults in frontal collisions; not children. Especially when a child is in a rear-facing safety seat or out of position, a frontal air bag can cause serious or fatal injury.
I'm not saying you are making a bad choice or otherwise passing judgment on you. Believe me, I'm raising my two year old to be a car guy already and I'd LOVE to take him with me in a Vette. But as parents we have to make judgment calls all the time about what's best for our children, and my decision is that it's not worth the risk to take a small child with me in the Corvette...same way he's not going to be allowed to drive one unsupervised when he's a teenage new driver.
As far as front seat versus back seat, my thinking is, no matter how safe a vehicle is, since most colissions are frontal, having a child in the back seat puts them several feet further from the impact site, and therefore has several more feet for the crash energy to dissipate. I don't know whether or not a Corvette is a particularly safe car - I can't find crash test ratings from NHTSA or IIHS - but I came to my decision after doing some searching here on DC a few months ago. Here's a link
to a post where I linked my search results on DC about child seat safety in a Corvette. You're a parent and it's up to you to make a choice.:thumbsup:
Regarding your comment about school buses, I wish they had shoulder belts, but the theory behind not having them is that compartmentalization (thickly padded, high-back seats putting the children in a cocoon) protects them pretty well. The bridge collapse in Minneapolis had a school bus on it and all of the kids survived.
And when I was 5 years old, my parents bought a new 1980 Corvette and my "seat" was in the cargo area under the glass. I remember playing with the storage compartment and battery doors. Yes, I survived, and you survived, but you were twice as likely to die in a car accident in 1975 than you were in 2005 (3.5 fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles of travel versus 1.47 in 2005...link
). So of course we all survived, or else we wouldn't be here on DC talking about it...but the ones who didn't survive can't tell their stories.
Again, I am not criticizing you, just explaining where I am coming from. We all hopefully do what is best for our children, and like everything else in life, weigh the risks/benefits. I just want people who haven't decided (like I was a few months ago) to have both sides to consider before making their choice.