Improperly installed child safety seats do not fully protect children from injuries and/or deaths in crashes or in sudden emergency maneuvers. To find area locations which conduct carseat checkup events, go to www.seatcheck.net or www.nhtsa.gov. Wilmette Fire Department also provides this service to its residents free of charge.
Below are the guidelines for child safety seat use as provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
|WEIGHT||Birth to 1 year,
up to 20-22 lbs.
|Over 1 year and
Over 20 lbs.-40 lbs
|Over 40 lbs.
Ages 4-8, unless 4′-9”
|TYPE OF SEAT||Infant only or rear-facing convertible||Convertible / Forward-facing||Belt positioning booster seat|
|SEAT POSITION||Rear-facing only||Forward-facing||Forward-facing|
|ALWAYS MAKE SURE||Children to one year and at least 20 lbs. in rear-facing seats.
Harness straps at or below shoulder level
|Harness straps should be at or above shoulders.
Most seats require top slot for forward-facing
|Belt positioning booster seats must be used with both lap and shoulder belt.
Make sure the lap belt fits low and tight across the lap/upper thigh area and the shoulder belt fits snug crossing the chest and shoulder to avoid abdominal injuries
|WARNING||All children age 12 and under should ride in the back seat||All children age 12 and under should ride in the back seat||All children age 12 and under should be buckled in the back seat|
- All children should be placed in child safety seats, booster seats or seat belts – every time they ride in a vehicle.
- Children 12 and younger should be buckled up in the back seat.
- Infants must be placed in rear-facing seats until they are at least one year old and 20 pounds.
- Children between 20 and 40 pounds should be placed in forward-facing safety seats.
- When your child outgrows his or her forward-facing safety seat, use a booster seat until your child is at least 8 years old or over 4-feet 9-inches tall.
- Seat belts are made for adults. A booster seat raises a child up so the seat belt fits.
- Children who have outgrown booster seats should always use seat belts.