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Child Car Safety Seats

 

FACT: MOTOR VEHICLE CRASHES ARE THE LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH AND SERIOUS INJURY FOR CHILDREN OVER 1 YEAR OLD.
FACT: EVERY DAY AN UNRESTRAINED CHILD UNDER AGE FIVE IS KILLED IN A TRAFFIC CRASH IN THIS COUNTRY.
FACT: THE SAFEST PLACE FOR A CHILD IN A CAR IS IN A REAR SEAT, PROPERLY BUCKLED INTO A CHILD SAFETY SEAT OR A BOOSTER SEAT.

 

Texas Law States

A person commits an offense if the person operates a passenger vehicle, transports a child who is younger than eight years of age, unless the child is taller than four feet, nine inches, and does not keep the child secured during the operation of the vehicle in a child passenger safety seat system according to the instructions of the manufacturer of the safety seat system.

A person commits an offense if the person operates a passenger vehicle that is equipped with safety belts; and allows a child who is younger that 17 years of age and who is not required to be secured in a child passenger safety seat system, to ride in the vehicle without requiring the child to be secured by a safety belt.

Texas Law Summarized

All children under 17 years old must be secured in a safety belt or child safety seat, whether they are sitting in the front seat or back seat. Children under 5 years old and less than 36 inches tall must ride in a child safety seat. Children more than 36 inches tall and at least 5 years old but younger than 17 years old must be secured by a safety belt.

The Best Safety-Seat Parents/Guardians can use is:

  1. One that fits their car
  2. Easy to use
  3. Appropriate for their child’s height and weight

What Type of Child Car Safety Seat Should I Use?

If your child is:
Under a Year old and less than 20 pounds: use a rear-facing infant car seat. A rearfacing infant car seat should never be placed in the front seat of a car with an airbag. The infant child seat should sit at a 45-degree angle or the angle specified on the seat. This helps keep the baby’s head from drooping forward and cutting off the airway.

Under a Year old and less than 30 pounds: use a rear-facing convertible car seat. A rear facing convertible car seat should never be placed in the front seat of a car with an airbag. The convertible child seat should sit at a 45-degree angle or the angle specified on the seat. This helps keep the baby’s head from drooping forward and cutting off the airway.

At least one year old and 20 to 40 pounds: use a convertible car seat. You may turn the seat to face forward.

At least one year old and 30 to 40 pounds: use a booster seat with a harness.

Over 40 pounds and less than 4’9”:  your child should use a booster seat but remove the harness straps. The booster seat must be used with a lap/shoulder seat belt until the child is about 4’9”.

Over 4’9” tall:  your child must use a lap/shoulder seat belt. Children younger than 13 years old should never ride in the front seat of vehicles with active passenger airbags.

Did you know?


  • Four out of five car seats are installed and/or used wrong.
  • Could your child's be one of them?
  • What can you do to make sure you install the car seat correctly?
To learn more valuable information regarding Child Car Seat Safety, please refer to the Texas Children’s Center for Childhood Injury Prevention webpage