Parents naturally assume that any booster seat they buy in the store will help protect their child in the event of a car wreck. However, that is not always true. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tested many of the booster seats currently on the market. They found that about half of booster seats may not properly position the vehicle’s seat belt. They gave these seats a “check fit” rating, which means the seat belt position may not be safe in every make of vehicle.
How can you know that your child’s booster seat is safe?
- Have your child sit in the booster seat. Make sure he is buckled in with both a lap belt and a shoulder belt. If your seat comes with a belt guide, use the guide to keep the belt on the shoulder.
- The seat belt should fit the child snugly. If it is too loose, the booster seat is not properly fitted.
- Check the position of the seat belt. The lap belt should lie flat on the top of the child's upper thighs. The shoulder belt should cross the middle of a child's shoulder. Do not allow your child to tuck the shoulder belt behind his back or under his arm—these positions are not safe.
- If the belt crosses the abdomen, neck, or face, stop using the booster seat. If you are involved in an Atlanta car wreck, the seat belt may cause serious internal injuries in these positions.
- If your child is uncomfortable, the seat may not fit correctly.
- Do not use car seat accessories. These are not regulated and can compromise your child’s safety.
If you would like to discuss your child’s injury with an Atlanta car accident attorney, please contact Kaufman Law to schedule your free case consultation. You may also wish to request your free copy of Atlanta injury attorney Jeffrey Kaufman’s book, Hurt in Georgia: An Injury Attorney's Thoughts on Car Wrecks.