Has the Snugglebundl been crash tested and FAQs
Yes, the Snugglebundl has been crash tested to EU and USA standards at the NASA Calspan site. It is tested in both three and five point harnesses and up to the age of 18 months. If you want more detail than supplied in the FAQs below then please go to our blog here
Why is the Snugglebundl unique in helping parents with the most dangerous aspect of car seat usage?
The most dangerous thing about car seat useage is leaving a baby in a car seat too long. With many car seats attaching to frames, people are leaving babies in car seats far too much.
Dr Flemming discovered that new borns, who cannot move their heads, end up losing oxygen due to their chin being on their chest - this reduces air intake. He discovered that, after just twenty minutes, the blood oxygen levels of a newborn dropped below hypoxia level and kept dropping (hypoxia is below 92% - healthy blood oxygen level is 98%+).
Parents lose a lot of sleep so the fear of waking their baby by moving them out of the car seat causes them to push this boundary. As the Snugglebundl allows a parent to move a baby out of a car seat without waking it also has a massive benefit in reducing this risk.
In distress, some parents have even left their babies in car seats through the night. As the oxygen level keeps dropping, for a newborn that cannot move its chin, this is extremely dangerous.
Snugglebundl have overcome the need to avoid leaving a baby in a car seat for two long. 20 minutes for a newborn and 1.5 hours once the baby has control of his neck (between 1 to 3 months) is the guideline provided to prevent babies from spending too long in car seats. Clearly many parents have left newborn babies in car seats for long periods and everything is fine. This is because babies are very resilient and bounce back once picked up. However, now we know this detail, it's best not to leave a baby in a car seat for too long and too often.
Why did the car seat experts, who inspected the Snugglebundl, say it is safe?
The Snugglebundl is akin to the thickness of a baby grow and made from a dense cotton fabric that will not compress. The Snugglebundl is nowhere near as thick as car seat liners that go at the back of a baby and is deemed as perfectly safe by car seat experts. Indeed, this is why all the experts we consulted said it didn’t actually require crash testing.
Don’t you have to test it in all baby car seats?
No, not where a Snugglebundl garment is concerned. It is made of thin and dense material with no padding in the front or back. It's much thinner than a cloth nappy (for more detail read the answer given regarding the next question below).
No car seat manufacturer recommends any products/accessories in their car seat that they don’t make themselves?
The reason this is mentioned is due to the concern about "Fluff" (extra layers/padding in front and behind the baby). Manufacturers try out many tests of varying degrees of "fluff" with their car seats to ensure the items they sell with it are fully tested. This is why they cannot reccomend other products they haven't tested. However, they also know that a baby will be wearing clothing of sorts, so manufacturers recommend this to be lightweight layers that do not compromise the safety of the harness.
The Snugglebundl is not padded and is made out of thin, dense, organic cotton material therefore there are no worries about compression of the fabric.
To be sure our product is safe we also asked car seat experts to manually assess it. After close inspection they said that the fact that it is no thicker than a babygro means it is no different than a normal garment. Indeed, the NASA Calspan testing engineers also conferred that, due to it's thickness, it was perfectly safe and that it wasn't in need of crash testing.
In addition, the beauty of the Snugglebundl is that the side flaps wrap over the top of chest straps. This feature helps to omit the need for extra clothing to keep the baby warm. This gives an extra benfit of actually REDUCING the amount of "fluff" normally used by parents. .
Nonetheless, like car seat manufactures, we conducted eight crash tests in total. This was to ensure we covered many variables from different harness arrangements and to the age range of its users (Newborn to 18 months).
We are pleased to say that the Snugglebundl has been thoroughly considered regarding car seat safety and in fact, scientifically, ticks all the boxes.
Crash tests compliance is normally 30mph. What if the vehicle is going faster?
In normal crash situations people brake and collide with objects that absorb energy during the deformation process (such as the car crumbling in on itself, other cars, bushes or malleable metal barriers, etc). A crash test is designed to be from 30mph to a dead stop with no front bumper or inbuilt energy absorption, no brakes and without hitting an energy absorbent surface. This therefore covers any other plausible, survivable crash situations. The 30mph limit is literally life or death- any sudden collision, with no energy absorption that is much faster than 30mph is not considered to be easily survivable. This is why this speed limit and crash test condition is set as a world wide standard.
What about warranty coverage if you use an accessory not specifically designed by the car seat manufacturer?
This refers to items that are attached to the car seat or wrapped around the car seat that can cause damage or hinder its performance in the event of a crash. Examples given are mirrors, toys, fitted blankets, inserts not designed for the car seat, head supports, car seat canopies, attachable mosquito nets, attached sun blockers etc. However, the manufacturer would have to prove that an accessory was used and is dangerous and unsuitable for their seat in order to not honour a warranty. The Snugglebundl is a soft thin garment, not attached in any way and not a hard accessory. It does not interfere with the restraining system and has no padding, etc. To reiterate, the Snugglebundl has been tested and documented as not to compromise the effectiveness of the car seat.
Here is an article from WHICH where Britax "Leaders in Child Safety Technology" gives more information relating to accessories in car seats.
" We asked Britax, one of the leading car seat manufacturers, for its view on seat accessories. A spokesperson said: 'We invest significant time into the research, development and testing of our own manufactured accessories which accompany our child car seats. This ensures that the accessories offered enhance the consumer experience by offering added comfort and practicality, but doesn’t interfere with the crash performance of the car seats. Furthermore, the warranty of our car seats will be invalid if an accessory not developed by us is used in conjunction with the seat, ie. a permanent attachment to the seat. This is because any accessory attached to a car seat would require homologation to ensure the seat still performs in a crash as it should. Therefore we would advise against using accessories not developed and tested by the car seat manufacturers. On the other hand, an accessory which is not attached to our car seats won’t affect the warranty as it won’t have an impact on restraint performance during a crash.'
Read more: https://www.which.co.uk/reviews/child-car-seats/article/child-car-seat-accessories-afYV16y7R8OC - Which?
What about side impact?
This is taken care of by the car seat design itself—not what is worn in it. Unpadded clothing is not required to be tested for this eventuality. For a hard accessary like a drink stand etc then the producer may be required to prove that it would not cause possible injury in the event of a crash. Car seat advisors will give advice regarding such hard accessories.
Margaret Bolt - Leading car seat expert
“As a car seat expert and a mother or seven myself, I’d be very happy to recommend a Snugglebundl”
Snugglebundl Is a family business that takes car seat safety seriously?
We, as a small family business, use this product ourselves so safety is the most important factor. In addition to expert endorsements, over 100,000 parents/babies have now used and loved their Snugglebundls and shared fantastic reviews.