Car crashes remain one of the leading causes of death for young children. Unrestrained or improperly restrained children are far more likely to be injured, or to suffer more severe injuries in the event of a crash. To keep kids safe on the road, be sure they ride every time in a properly secured child safety seat that is appropriate for their size.
Choose the right seat. There are four stages of child passenger safety as children grow, from infant seats to the time they are ready for an adult seat belt alone. Check the car seat manufacturers' instructions for the exact height and weight limits of each seat.
|| REAR-FACING SEATS in the back seat from birth to at least 1 year old and at least 20 pounds.|
||FORWARD-FACING TODDLER SEATS in the back seat from age 1 and 20 pounds to about age 4 and 40 pounds. |
||BOOSTER SEATS in the back seat from about age 4 to at least age 8, unless 4'9" tall. |
||SAFETY BELTS at age 8 and older or taller than 4'9". All children age 12 and under should ride in the back seat. |
Car seats save lives when they are installed properly. At least 8 out of 10 children in a child safety seat are not buckled in properly. Learn to correctly use the car seat by reviewing the instructions from the seat manufacturer as well as the vehicle owner's manual. If you need assistance, a Child Passenger Safety technician can help. The Injury Prevention Program schedules ongoing car seat checks at a Safe Kids-sponsored inspection station in collaboration with Boston EMS and other coalition partners.
Schedule a free appointment with a Child Passenger Safety technician. Boston residents can schedule an appointment at 617-343-6891 or online, and non-residents can find a technician in their area here.
Buckle up, it's the law! The Massachusetts Child Passenger Safety Law was amended in July 2008 to include booster seat requirements.
- Children must be in a federally approved child passenger restraint that is properly fastened and secured until they are 8 years old OR over 57” tall.
- Children ages 8 through 12 must wear a properly fastened safety belt.
- A police officer can stop your vehicle if a child age 12 or under is not properly restrained.