If there's a baby in your family, you’ve probably already had your share of clicking, buckling, adjusting, re-adjusting and leveling. For those approaching a car seat for the first time, it can be quite intimidating. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that 3 out of 4 car seats are not used properly. Don’t make that mistake. Protect your precious cargo with a few simple steps.
First, determining which type of restraint you need depends on your child’s age and size:
1. Keep infants in the back seat, in rear-facing child safety seats, as long as possible up to the height or weight limit of the particular seat. At a minimum, keep infants rear-facing until at least age 1 and at least 20 pounds.
2. When children outgrow their rear-facing seats they should ride in forward-facing child safety seats, in the back seat, until they reach the upper weight or height limit of the particular seat (usually around age 4 and 40 pounds).
3. Once children outgrow their forward-facing seats, they should ride in booster seats, in the back seat, until the vehicle seat belts fit properly.
***A new boster seat law goes into effect in Ohio on October 7. Under the law, all children between 4 to 8-years-old need to be in a booster seat unless they are 4'9" tall.
4. When children outgrow their booster seats, they can use the adult seat belts in the back seat, if they fit properly.
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center is urging all parents to get their safety seats inspected. Certified car seat technicians will make sure your car seat is installed correctly, and they’ll install it for you!
A lot of local fire departments also do this. They have someone on staff that’s trained through Children’s.
To find a location near you, call 513-636-7865.
You can also use the NHTSA Child Safety Seat Inspection Station Locator