Booster Seat Requirements

Booster seat requirements are based on the government’s strict crash and fire safety standards. This means that any booster seat purchased is guaranteed to be technically safe.

Why use booster seats?

Booster seats are needed by children riding in cars since vehicle crashes are usually the leading cause of death in children older than 3 years old.┬áSeat belts are only made to fit adult passengers of the vehicle and not kids. The use of a booster seat lessens the chances of children being injured to a large percentage. This is because the booster seat lifts your child in such a way that the vehicle’s lap and the shoulder belts can reliably restrain him safely.

What the state laws require?

Most states in the US and the District of Columbia have established booster seat requirements for children. Only the states of Arizona, Florida and South Dakota have not implemented booster seat laws.

Each state with a booster seat law has guidelines indicating the requirements for booster seats. Booster seat requirements of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) include a provision that all kids who have outgrown their car seats should continue to use booster seats until they reach the age of 8 and are 4 feet and 9 inches tall.

Booster seat and accessories

It is very important that the booster seat is flat against the seat in such a way that it does not tip over easily. One way of ensuring that your booster seat will not deviate from its mount is to test the booster seat in the vehicle. Bring with your child in the car and test it with him before buying it.

Harness

A harness may not be required for kids from 30 pounds and more as required by most car and booster seat combos but this is only applicable to a very tall and thin child who has outgrown the harness but has not reached the weight of 40 pounds.

Most kids shall use and continue to use the harness until they have reached a weight of 40 pounds especially if your child is very active when in the car. An active child has the tendency to get out of his seat belt or deviate the shoulder belt behind or under his arm.

Lap belt

The lap belt must always cross the hips of the child and touch the top of the child’s thighs when the child is in the booster seat.

Shoulder belt

The shoulder belt must be set on his shoulder and not on his neck, not on her upper arm either.The shoulder belt must also cross the center of the child’s chest.

The booster seat is always be positioned in the center of the vehicle’s rear seat. Your child is best protected from a side impact crash from this position. A lap belt must not be used to anchor the booster seat. Positioning of the booster seats will be based on the kind of seat belts you have and the contours of your backseat if you got two kids in the car.