Will New Car Seat Guidelines Decrease the Number of North Carolina Child Injuries that Occur During Traffic Crashes?

April 6, 2011, by Michael A. DeMayo

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has updated its child safety seat guidelines. The revisions are based on the latest child restrain technologies and medical and scientific research. Our Charlotte, North Carolina child injury lawyers hope that these modifications will help decrease the number of injuries to minors during traffic crashes.

While the old guidelines were categorized by type of child seat, the new guidelines are categorized according to age. NHTSA is advising that a child should use the restraint system designated for each age until he/she outgrows the weight or height limit for that seat that the manufacturer has set.

Our Monroe, North Carolina personal injury law firm is familiar with the different type of child seat defects that can cause serious injury during a car crash, including weakened shells, flammable materials, handle defects, harness issues. That said, even if a child safety seat is free from defects, it is still important that your child that is using the car seat appropriate for his/her age and that it is properly assembled and used correctly. Families whose children are injured because of child safety seat failure may have grounds for a North Carolina products liability lawsuit against the manufacturer.

NHTSA’s Latest Car Seat Recommendations:

Newborn to 12 Months: Your baby should use a rear-facing car seat appropriate to his/her age, height, and weight.

Ages 1 to 3: NHTSA recommends keeping your child’s car seat rear-facing for as long as possible until he/she exceeds the seat manufacturer’s height or weight limits.

Ages 4 to 7: A forward-facing car seat with a harness is recommended until he/she outgrows the manufacturer limits.

Ages 8 to 12: Your child should use a booster seat until he she is grown enough to use a seat belt and have it fall over the upper thighs. The shoulder belt should be snug across the chest and shoulders. It is always safer for your son/daughter to ride the back seat.

Car crashes continue to be the number one cause of child fatalities. Child restraint systems saved nearly 9,000 lives between 1975 and 2008.

Child Safety-Seat Recommendations Revamped, ABC News, March 21, 2011

Child Safety Seat Recommendations, NHTSA

Related Web Resources:
Recommendations on Child Safety Seats, American Academy of Pediatrics


More Blog Posts:
Keeping Your Child Safe During North Carolina Car Crashes, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyer Blog, September 22, 2010

North Carolina Child Death Fatality Rate was Lowest Ever in 2008, North Carolina Injury Lawyer Blog, September 16, 2009

Motor Vehicle Accidents Continue to be the #1 Killer of Children, Says World Health Organization, North Carolina Injury Lawyer Blog, December 29, 2008


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