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All Press Releases for December 05, 2013 »
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National safety administration pushes for stricter car seat regulations

Understanding the regulatory requirements for child restraint systems can be a daunting task.
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    December 05, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Although most parents in Bexar County feel they are transporting their most precious cargo when they drive their children from one location to another, it is surprising how many parents fail to follow the state regulations regarding child restraints. Understanding the regulatory requirements for child restraint systems can be a daunting task.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 3,000 people were fatality injured in motor vehicle accidents across Texas in 2011, more fatalities than occurred in any other state. Sadly, 133 of those fatalities were children under the age of fifteen. Motor vehicle accidents are the number one killer of children between ages one and thirteen, as reported by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Texas state regulations on child vehicle restraints

Whether you are taking a road trip across the state or simply driving your children to school, it is essential for the safety of your children that you observe the following recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics:
- Rear-facing seats: Infants should be placed in rear-facing car seats from birth until they reach thirty-five pounds in weight or two-years in age. Make sure the rear-facing car seat is properly installed according to the instructions in the owner's manual.
- Forward-facing seats: Once a child's weight exceeds thirty-five pounds, the child can be transitioned from a rear-facing seat to a forward-facing seat. The child can remain in the forward facing car seat until the child reaches the seat's highest adjustment for the restraint harness or until the child weighs between forty and eighty pounds. Be careful not to transition the child to a forward-facing seat until the child meets the age, weight and height requirements.
- Booster seats: A booster seat is used once the child has outgrown the forward-facing seat. Since booster seats are used with the vehicle's regular adult seat belt, they are designed to boost a seated child's height so that the seatbelt will properly fit the child.
- Adult safety belt: When a child's height reaches approximately four feet-nine inches, the child may use the vehicle's adult safety belt. Many children reach this height when they are between ages ten and twelve, while other children are ready to transition from a booster seat much earlier.

Texas law requires that from birth through age eight, children must be safely buckled into an appropriate safety seat when transported by motor vehicle.

Current recommendations for stricter policies

While current safety regulations allow children over the height of four feet-nine inches to wear an adult safety belt, the Institute for Highway Safety encourages parents to keep children in booster seats until they reach age thirteen. The Institute also encourages the use of a five-point harness rather than a three-point harness for child restraint systems.

Car and truck accidents often result in serious injury or death. In order that you and your loved ones can receive just compensation if you have been involved in a vehicular collision, be sure to call a reputable Bexar County attorney who is experienced in handling serious bodily injury claims.

Article provided by Tinsman & Sciano, Inc.
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