During the week of September 16-22, National Child Passenger Safety Week is observed to help remind parents and teach adults to make sure that all children are seated properly in car seats. Since car crashes are currently the #1 killer of children 12 years and younger, this observance week was started to educate the public in hopes of saving the lives of our children.
In our September Newsletter, two-year-old Ryan Jurewitz explained important tips on car safety for children according to age. For those that have missed out on the important car safety tips for children in our Newsletter, let’s recap what Ryan went over in celebration of National Child Passenger Safety Week.
Here are the following child car seat rules according to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA):
- 12 Months or Less – Only use rear-facing car seats in the back seat.
- 1-3 years old – It is safest to keep child in rear-facing car seats for as long as possible until they reach the top height or weight limit of the car seat’s manufacturer. If they outgrow the car seat, the child is ready for a forward-facing car seat with a harness still in the back seat.
- 4-7 years old – Use a forward-facing car seat with a harness until they reach the height and weight limit allowed by the car seat’s manufacturer. When they outgrow car seat, the child is ready for a booster seat still in the back seat.
- 8-12 years old – Use the booster seat until they are big enough to properly fit the cars lap and shoulder seat belt. Lap belt must rest across upper thighs and not the stomach. Shoulder belt must rest across chest and shoulder; not the neck or face.
Remember, children of all ages should ride in the back seat of the car for optimal protection. Although most parents may think they are following proper car seat guidelines, three out of four parents do not use child restraints properly according to the NHTSA. We recommend stopping by your local car seat inspection station to ensure that your car seat is properly protecting your child.
To find a child car seat inspection station near you, visit NHTSA.gov.
For legal advice on your child’s injury, call our experienced San Diego child injury attorneys at (888) 233-5020.