Just because your child is buckled in doesn't mean they are safe. Follow this advice to increase their level of safety.
- Step 1: Choose a front or rear facing car seat. Check your state's guidelines to determine whether your child meets the age, height, and weight requirements for a forward-facing car seat.
- Step 2: When you strap the child into the seat, pull the straps tight. You should only be able to fit one finger between the strap and your child.
- Step 3: Have the car seat inspected for proper installation. Many auto insurance companies offer free child safety seat inspections.
- TIP: Your car seat should not move more than 1 inch side to side or front to back.
- Step 4: Install all car seats in the back seat. Front seat air bags are not designed to protect children and can harm them when deployed.
- Step 5: Adjust the seat's belts and harnesses to accommodate your child's height and weight.
- TIP: Children from 40 to 80 pounds should sit in a booster seat.
- Step 6: Read and follow the instructions that came with the car seat. Most newer vehicles are equipped with a latch system designed to maintain car seat safety.