Give Your Baby a Boost

A new Arizona Law could result in a $50 fine if you are found driving with a child who is not seated in a booster seat. Starting August 2, 2012, a child must be seated and restrained in a booster seat if they are between the ages of 5 and 7 and under 4’ 10”.

According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration, car crashes are the most fatal accident for children ages 1 to 12 in the U.S. To reduce these child injury statistics, proper use of booster seats may prevent serious injuries or fatalities.

As parents, we know that one of your biggest concerns while in the car is the safety of your infant or toddler. This is why the type of car seat or booster seat that you choose is immensely important. The right seat and proper installation can mean the difference between life and death for your child if you are in a car accident.

As you know, there are numerous types and models of car seats to choose from. It can be trying to choose the best option for your child. This is why the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety compiled a list of the best and worst booster seats for your child. It is imperative that the seat you choose properly fits not only your child, but your car as well.

Five-step safety test

There are various resources available to ensure the proper seat and fit for your child. SafetyBeltSafe U.S.A, a non-profit organization dedicated to child passenger safety offers this 5-step test that all parents should utilize when deciding whether or not their child needs a booster seat.

  • Does the child sit all the way back with hips against the auto seat?
  • Do your child’s knees bend comfortably at the edge of the auto seat?
  • Does the shoulder belt cross the shoulder between the neck and the arm?
  • Is the lap belt as low on the hips as possible and touching the thighs?
  • Can the child stay seated like this for the duration of the trip?

If the answer to any of these questions was “no” a booster seat is necessary to ensure proper seat belt positioning and protection.

Parents are also encouraged to take their booster seat and car the nearest car inspection station. The locations are available at the.

For those whose concern is the cost of a booster seat, there are programs available that offer assistance. Safe Kids Pima County and TMC offers parents information and training on how to properly install a car seat.

If you witness a child who is not properly restrained, you are encouraged to call the “Buckle Up, Baby” hot line: 1-800-505-BABY. The following information is necessary to file a report:

  • Vehicle License number and state
  • The location of the vehicle
  • Where the child was sitting in the vehicle

This information is provided as a public service by Hollingsworth Kelly and is not intended to serve as legal advice