Correctly installing a child safety seat that fits well can dramatically reduce your child’s risk of a catastrophic auto accident injury. In fact, according to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration, this risk is 59% higher with a seat belt than with an appropriate child safety seat.
Review the options for safety seats based on your child’s size and age.
Types of child safety seats
Georgia requires drivers transporting children ages 8 and younger to use an appropriate safety seat for the child’s age, height and weight. As your little one grows, you will encounter these types of child safety seats:
- Infant seats, used from birth to 12 months. These seats usually accommodate babies weighing up to 20 lbs. and must remain rear-facing.
- Toddler seat, used for children ages 1 to 3 years weighing 20 to 40 lbs. While you can place your child in a forward-facing seat beginning at age 1 if he or she weighs at least 20 pounds, choose a seat that supports extended rear-facing for optimal safety.
- Booster seat, used from ages 4 to 8. These seats fit children weighing 40 to 80 lbs. and fewer than 57 inches tall.
Considerations for older children
You can keep your child in a booster seat even after age 8 if he or she does not fit correctly in the car’s safety belt. The belt should rest snugly across the lap and shoulder, not across the stomach area.
Children should remain in the back seat until at least age 13. A deployed airbag can gravely injure smaller children if a serious auto accident occurs.