Child passenger safety is more important than ever as traffic deaths nationwide
are climbing at an alarming rate. Crashes are a leading cause of death
in children, and fatalities have been steadily increasing since 2014.
As a community, we have an obligation to keep our precious children safe
while traveling. Parents and caregivers can do this by making sure children
are properly buckled up and in the proper car seat for
every trip, every time.
Child Passenger Safety Week is September 23-29, 2018, and it’s a
good opportunity to review the guidelines for car seat selection, direction,
location, installation and harnessing. It is crucial to make sure each
child in a vehicle is traveling in the correct car seat for their age and size.
Here are the guidelines under Pennsylvania’s Child Passenger Protection Act 229:
- All children from birth to age of 4 must be buckled into a federally-approved
child passenger restraint system (child safety seat), which must be secured
to the vehicle by the seat belt system (or using the vehicle’s LATCH
system, available in newer vehicles), no matter where they ride in the vehicle.
As of August 2016,
children younger than age 2 must be secured rear-facing, until they outgrow the maximum weight and height of the car seat. Children
under 2 are 75 percent less likely to die or to be severely injured in
a crash if they are rear-facing.
- All children 4 years of age and older, but less than 8 years, must be buckled
into a federally-approved child booster seat, which must be secured to
the vehicle by the seat belt system, no matter where they ride in a vehicle
(front or back seat). Booster seats must be used in conjunction with lap
and shoulder belts.
- All children ages 8 to 18 years of age must be buckled in a seat belt,
no matter where they ride in the vehicle (front or back seat). Keep in
mind that the back seat is the safest place for a child under the age
of 12 to ride.
- Drivers are responsible for securing children into an approved child passenger
restraint system and ensuring children under age 18 are buckled up.
When used properly, car seats, booster seats and seat belts save lives
and offer the best protection for children in crashes. National Seat Check
Saturday is September 29th, and there are many local educational events that teach Pennsylvania laws
and offer best practice recommendations for correctly securing children.
At Metzger Wickersham, we do all we can to support efforts in promoting
child passenger safety, and we hope you will too!
Harrisburg Car Accident Lawyers Serving All of PA
If your child or loved one has been injured in a crash caused by a negligent
driver, call on our accident attorneys for legal guidance. With over a
century of representation to Pennsylvania communities, we have earned
a reputation for being one of the most trusted personal injury legal teams
in the region.
or fill out our online form to schedule a free case consultation today.