Child Restraint State Laws
State laws regulating car seat, booster seat and seat belt use should be considered a bare minimum for safety, especially when it comes to child restraint. KidsAndCars.org recommends that parents follow recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
The AAP recommends:
- Infants and toddlers should ride in a rear-facing car safety seat as long as possible, until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by their seat. Most convertible seats have limits that will allow children to ride rear-facing for 2 years or more.
- Once they are facing forward, children should use a forward-facing car safety seat with a harness for as long as possible, until they reach the height and weight limits for their seats. Many seats can accommodate children up to 65 pounds or more.
- When children exceed these limits, they should use a belt-positioning booster seat until the vehicle’s lap and shoulder seat belt fits properly. This is often when they have reached at least 4 feet 9 inches in height and are 8 to 12 years old.
- When children are old enough and large enough to use the vehicle seat belt alone, they should always use lap and shoulder seat belts for optimal protection.
- All children younger than 13 years should be restrained in the rear seats of vehicles for optimal protection. State Laws – http://www.iihs.org/iihs/topics/laws/safetybeltuse?topicName=child-safety