As a parent, it is your job to protect your child when riding in a vehicle. Using car seats properly helps keep children safe. But with so many different types of car seats on the market, understanding how to use them correctly can be overwhelming for parents.
Visit the AAP™ Car Seat Safety Information page for guidance on choosing the most appropriate car safety seat for your child.
Child Passenger Safety –AAP Guidelines Summary/2020
- All infants and toddlers should ride in a rear-facing car safety seat (CSS) as long as possible, until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by their CSS’s manufacturer. Most convertible seats have limits that will permit children to ride rear-facing for 2 years or more.
- All children who have outgrown the rear-facing weight or height limit for their CSS should use a forward-facing CSS with a harness for as long as possible, up to the highest weight or height allowed by their CSS’s manufacturer.
- All children whose weight or height is above the forward-facing limit for their CSS should use a belt-positioning booster seat until the vehicle lap and shoulder seat belt fits properly, typically when they have reached 4 ft 9 inches in height and are between 8 and 12 years of age.
- When children are old enough and large enough to use the vehicle seat belt alone, they should always use lap and shoulder seat belts for optimal protection.
- All children younger than 13 years should be restrained in the rear seats of vehicles for optimal protection.
“Child Passenger Safety”. Pediatrics Volume 142, number 5, Nov 2018:e20182460.