Child Safety when to Switch from a Car Seat to Booster Seat

Car seats are very important in keeping your child safe while in the car.  Even if you are going for a very short car trip, keeping your child in the car seat is very crucial.  Car seats have been proven to save children’s lives in case of car accidents.  An infant will start off in a rear-facing car seat that can be taken in and out of the car with the click of a button.  Once your little one starts to grow, he or she will be able to go in a forward-facing car seat and there will come a day when your child will be ready for a booster seat.

Some parents will ask themselves when their child will be ready for a booster seat.  The answer to remember is that a child is ready for a booster seat when he or she is at least four years old and weighs forty pounds.  Just because your child has turned four, it does not mean that he or she is ready to be moved to a booster seat.  Therefore, keep using your car seat as long as it fits because they are the safest option for your child. Also keep in mind to check the car seat law in your state to find what the local regulations are for a car seat in the area you are living.

Another key thing to remember about a booster seat is to remember not to skip this step and go directly using seat belts on their won.  Many parents make this mistake and it can be a very dangerous and costly one.  The reason that parents should not skip the booster seat is that the booster will position your car’s lap and shoulder belts correctly on your child’s torso.  Without a booster, the seat-belt will be too high and fall across the belly and neck, where in case of a crash, it can cause serious damage. Parents must remember that seat belts in a vehicle do not fit shorter adults correctly; therefore, it is not a surprising that most children will need to continue to use the booster seat until they are at least eight years old.

When you are shopping for a booster seat, make sure to pick one that uses your car’s lap and shoulder belts rather than one designed for lap belts only.  In the event of a crash, the belt-positioning seats are much safer.  A backless booster seat tends to provide a better fit than the high-back kind, and they are also more convenient to move from car to car. There is an exception to the rule, that is if the rear seat of your vehicle has a low back, then you should opt for a high-back booster seat because it will provide more head and neck protection in case of a crash.