07 June 2010

Before You Lose the Booster Seat ...

If you think your child is ready to lose his booster seat, be wary of Texas' new booster-seat law—if not, starting this month you could be ticketed for not meeting state standards. Children must sit in a booster seat until they are either 8 years old or taller than 4 feet, 9 inches (and, of course, they must also always wear a seat belt).

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration advises parents to check the following before allowing their child to ride in the car sans booster seat:

  • Child must be able to sit with back and hips all the way against the back of the car's seat (without slouching).
  • Child must be able to bend knees over the edge of the seat and keep feet flat on the floor.
  • The child's seat belt must cross over his shoulder and the middle of his chest (not neck) and fit snugly over his hips (not stomach).
  • The car's headrest must also be high enough to support the child's head.

The state's law was amended in September 2009, but starting this month fines will be issued.

For more information about child safety, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or the American Academy of Pediatrics.

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