What is a CARES Harness?
CARES Child Aviation Restraint System
Have you heard of CARES? Its a harness type restraint manufactured by AMSAFE, one of the world leading aircraft seatbelt manufacturers. It takes the worry many of us have about flying with children on planes. We use ours regularly on Qantas and Jetstar. However, it is approved by CASA (Civil Aviation Safety Authority) for use on Australian planes and other countries all over the world.
If you’ve ever considered that our kids need car seats in cars, but only lap belts on planes, then you may have been as confused as I was. This is how I found the CARES! Invented by a US grandmother, the CARES protects the child upper torso by a secure harness which is attached to the aircraft seat. The aircraft seat belt goes through the bottom loop.
It is not designed to keep children in the chairs (although this can be an added benefit), it is specifically designed for safety in turbulence or an emergency situation. (It is also not for use in cars).
The other alternative to a CARES is a carseat. However, there are many difficulties in having your carseat approved for use on the aircraft and there are no bolts (as in cars) to secure it. Other parents suggest their kids aren’t as comfortable during long haul trips in their carseat, while others report difficulty using the tray table and other irate passengers who can’t recline their seat in front of them.
If you’re flying and your child is in the recommended weight limit of 10 – 20 Kilos and up to a metre tall then the CARES may be for you.
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