What is the Energy-Absorbing Versa-Tether?
The BRITAX energy-absorbing Versa-Tether is a strap (a.k.a. webbing) that is attached to two points of the upper part of the child seat; there is a hook on this strap that attaches to an anchor in your vehicle. (To learn more about the LATCH system, visit our About LATCH page.) The BRITAX tether system allows you to tether your child seat in either the rear-facing or forward-facing modes.
Where is the Energy-Absorbing Versa-Tether located on the car seat?
The Versa-Tether strap is located on the back, upper-part of the seat.
How does my child benefit from a seat with an Energy-Absorbing Versa-Tether?
The job of a car seat is to prevent injury to your child during a crash; seats featuring an Energy-Absorbing Versa-Tether can help to minimize injury by:
- diverting crash forces away from your child during a crash,
- minimizing the movement of your child during the crash, and
- helping to slow down your child’s body during a crash.
The use of a tether can reduce the distance that your child’s head moves forward (also called head excursion) by four to six inches, thereby minimizing the risk of injury during a crash.
||Child seat with tether on impact. Safety belt, tether and harness work together to limit the child’s forward movement.
||Child seat without tether on impact. In extreme cases, without the additional protection of the Versa-Tether, the child’s head could move enough on impact to cause injury.
How does the Energy-Absorbing Versa-Tether work?
The BRITAX energy-managing Versa-Tether is a system that:
- distributes crash forces over a larger area of the seat shell,
- minimizes movement of the child seat, and
- extends the ride down of the crash.
First of all, the BRITAX Versa-Tether’s two attachment points allow crash forces to be distributed over a larger area of the seat shell. Managing or diverting crash forces away from your child during a crash helps to minimize injury. The Versa-Tether webbing itself will absorb some of the crash forces away from your child; the v-shape that is created in the BRITAX Versa-Tether means that more webbing is used in the BRITAX Versa-Tether than in standard tethers that posses just one attachment point.
Secondly, the patented Versa-Tether minimizes movement of the child seat both front to back and side to side. Movement is minimized front to back because the BRITAX Versa-Tether can be used to tether the top of the child seat to the vehicle in either the rear-facing or forward-facing modes. When used in the rear-facing mode, it will reduce the amount of “rebound” the seat may experience during a crash. (Rebound is that movement that occurs after your vehicle has come to a stop and your body is forced back into the seat during a frontal impact.)
The Versa-Tether also helps to stabilize the child seat side to side because it has two attachment points at the top of the child seat versus just one single attachment point.
Finally, the Energy-Absorbing Versa-Tether is further enhanced by incorporating a series of loops in the tether where it attaches to the top of the child seat. This series of loops is released in stages during a crash, and helps to extend the ride down of the crash. Ride down is the extension of time before the forces are felt by the occupant during a crash.
Watch this video to see how the Versa-Tether, combined with other technologies, minimizes the risk of head injury during a crash:
How long has BRITAX incorporated the Energy-Absorbing Versa-Tether in their seats?
The Versa-Tether is a feature that has been incorporated in our seats since 1996. The series of loops that help to extend the ride down have been incorporated in our seats since 2007.
Which current BRITAX car seats feature an Energy-Absorbing Versa-Tether?
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