Why Even Your Older Kids Need A Car Seat

By: Cheryl Levey

State mandatory car seat laws have saved thousands of children's lives. However, there are still 1,800 deaths and over 280,000 injuries every year due to people either not restraining their kids or more likely — not restraining them properly.

When we have our kids, we are inundated with information about infant car safety seats and how to install them — straps just right, facing backward and at a certain angle. Heck, lots of hospitals even have someone on staff who will install the seat correctly for you before you take your baby home. We also know that our babies need to be turned around to forward-facing seats once they reach 20 pounds and 1 year of age.

But, at least in my experience, once our kids are in forward-facing car seats, the car seat safety educational campaigns seem to stop. We're left on our own to figure out when our kids don't need those seats any more. Unfortunately, many people seem to think that kids don't need any seat at all once they reach about 40 pounds or about 5 years of age. Many of the car seat safety resources out there briefly mention the importance of using a booster seat, but there is very little information specifically about older kids and the need for them to use a booster from the time they are about 40 pounds until they weigh 80 pounds, or are around 8 years old.

See, kids under 8 (generally speaking — your child may be bigger or smaller than the "average") just aren't tall or heavy enough to wear a regular seat belt properly. The belts and seats just aren't made for a child's frame. When a child is seated in a car without a booster seat, the seat belt does not fit across their chest properly. Instead, it goes across their neck. In a crash, that seat belt could become deadly - causing injuries to the neck and spine, strangulation, and even death.

Here are just a few tips for car seat safety for kids between 40 and 80 pounds, typically between ages 4 and 8.

Please check out the resources below to learn more about the importance of using a booster seat for your child aged 4-8 weighing 40-80 pounds. If you have a child who should be using a booster seat, get one today. The backless versions are very inexpensive - less than the cost of a dinner out for two. And using it could save your child's life.


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Cheryl Levey owns cherylsweb.com, a different kind of resource for the freelancer. Visit now and get ideas, tips, articles, and more to help you achieve success in your freelance business and life.

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