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Taking a Road Trip This Summer? Does Your Child Require a Car Seat?

Jaclyn Hughes

Thank goodness safety laws have evolved over the past few decades, as years ago we were taken home from the hospital as newborns with no car seats whatsoever. People certainly seemed to have gotten wise to putting little one’s safety as the number one priority on the road today. If you plan on hitting the road, you may be surprised at the recommendations all of the safety organizations have for car seats in 2015.

Years ago, if a child was basically 3 or 4 years old, they were still in a booster seat of some sort, and even then some ditched the car seats altogether once their child outgrew the infant carrier version. The infant ones are the car seats that face backwards in the vehicle and hold the child until they reach 40lbs. For some of us parents of very tall kids, this 40 pound limit came much faster than it does for other children, and then the rules often become somewhat blurred. What if you have a large child for their age, or what if you have a 12 year old that is really small? Here’s the scoop on car seat safety:

Each state in the U.S. seems to have their own agenda and regulations for height/weight restrictions but these are the best tips to live by-

If your child is under 57” tall, they should still be placed in a booster seat of some sort.

If your infant is under 20 pounds, they need to be a rear facing car seat

Do not ever fasten a rear facing car seat in front of an airbag

If your baby is between 20-40 pounds, they are to remain in the infant car seat, but may be placed facing forward

Always seat children ages 12 and under in the back seat

Fines for not abiding the rules where child car seat safety is concerned can be pricey, and even severely harm your child should you be involved in an accident. Please visit GHSA’s website for specific state by state laws to help direct you in the right path.

Take note that this isn’t going away anytime soon as many states are making waves updating their local rules and increasing fines for not following them. WBKO recently featured some details regarding Kentucky’s newest laws put in place that are just one example of the current trend in making our kiddos safer on the roads.