Upper Body Support and Restraint with RideSafer Tethers
When the RideSafer® is being used with a lap-only belt, you are required to use a tether strap to restrain the upper portion of the child.
Some parents choose to use the tether strap with the lap-shoulder belt for additional upper body support and restraint. This is especially helpful for younger, wiggly or special needs children. We recommend using the tether for children age 3 to 5 to help keep them in proper pre-crash position.
The tether strap hooks to the RideSafer vest and a tether anchor point in the vehicle (or with the EATAL — sold separately). Check your vehicle owners manual for the locations of the available tether anchors. It is dangerous to use other types of hooks or anchor points, like a cargo hook. These other hooks could be pulled out during a crash then the end of the tether strap would be flying around the car.
There are two types of RideSafer tethers:
- Use a Single Tether with the RideSafer, a lap-only seat belt and children 30-60lbs.
- Or use the single tether along with a lap-shoulder belt for additional support pre and during a crash. We especially recommend this for those younger children (age 3 to 5) and children with special needs.
- Use a Dual Tether with the RideSafer, a lap-only seat belt and children 60-80lbs. Vehicle tether anchor points are only rated by the car manufacturer to 65 lbs. For children who are between 65-80 lbs and using a lap only belt, we are required to split their weight between two tether anchor points.
When using the tether and the lap-shoulder belt, because the seat belt is doing the vast majority of restraining the upper body, they can use the single tether all the way up to the 80 pounds. The dual tether is only required when the vest is doing all the restraining in a lap-only belt situation.
Click here to buy a RideSafer Tether.
Hi! I’m looking some safety device to my son of 11 years old and 104 ponds of weight.
He’s autistic and he food how unlock every seatbelt and locker so I’m desespérate.
He bolso can escape when the belt is locked form
Bottom! So what idea can you offer me to drive safely?
I will appreciate so much
Hi Stella, Thanks for reaching out. It sounds like you have a real challenge keeping your son safe in the car. That must be hard at times. I’ll try to help.
As far as the vehicle’s seat belt, are you familiar with how to lock it (in most cars)? Here is a video that might be helpful. You can “lock” the seatbelt on him which might help. The only way he could undo this locked mode would be to unbuckle the seatbelt and start over.
If he’s able to push the seat belt release button you might want to try the BuckleBoss. This will prevent him from unbuckling himself.
I am not sure if a RideSafer would help you, it really depends on the child but some parents have had success with it solving the problems you describe. Ultimately you might need a true special needs seat to keep him safe. There are 2 companies that I can refer you to:
EZ-On Pro or Merritt Car Seats
I hope this helps you keep your son safe. :)
It is unsafe to lock a seatbelt while in use. It prevents it locking in the event of a crash.
Alanna, It seems there is some misunderstanding on how seatbelts are designed to function. All seatbelt systems that have a retractor mechanism are designed to lock. The only question is, “under what conditions will it lock?”
Some only lock in a rapid deceleration or crash. This is the Emergency Locking Retractor (ELR). There is a second type of retractor which is an Automatic Locking Retractor (ALR). This type locks automatically, every time it is extended to the point of being buckled (it won’t lock if only pulled out a short distance). These are very rare these days but used to be more common 20+ years ago.
Since the “lockability” requirement was included in the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards for seat belt systems, ALL seatbelts are required to have the functionality of locking PRE-Crash for the express purpose of installing children’s car seat and keeping them tight during daily driving. Today what is most common in cars is a 3rd type of retractor call a Switchable Retractor which contains the functionality of both an ELR (only locks in an emergency) and an ALR (automatically locks every time). The ALR functionality meets the FMVSS requirements to install car seats and keep them tight without the inconvenience to the adult occupant of having the seatbelt lock and stay tight every time they put it on.
There are some circumstances where a parent or caregiver will choose to access the ALR mode when using the seatbelt to restrain a child in Stage #3- Seat Belt Positioning Stage (aka Booster Stage) or even after a child passes the 5-Step Test and is no longer using a seat belt positioning device (booster or RideSafer). Making this choice in no way compromises the ability of the seatbelt to lock and do its job of restraining the child in a crash. Locking the seatbelt (accessing the ALR Mode) is nothing more than pre-locking the seatbelt (most likely in a snug fit on the child to keep them properly positioned). I hope this helps you understand that there is not any danger in locking the seatbelt.
I ordered one of your best for my daughter. She is 72 lbs but autistic and I’m wondering if I can use the tethers and the full seatbelt together? Thanks
The RideSafer can be used in any of the following configurations:
1. With a lap-shoulder belt.
2. With a lap-shoulder belt and tether strap.
3. With a lap-only belt and tether strap. (Tether strap is required in this scenario to provide the upper body restraint for the child. And in your case you would need to use a dual tether.)