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Georgia Car Accident Highlights the Importance of Car Seats for Children

How long does my child need to remain in a car or booster seat?

A recent fatal crash on I-75 illustrates the critical importance of securing your child in an appropriate car seat. Witnesses report that the driver of a GMC Yukon slammed into the back of a tractor-trailer nearby the Georgia National Fairgrounds.  A two-year-old girl who was seated in the front seat of the Yukon died in the car accident.  Authorities stated that the child suffered a severe head injury and died upon impact.  A car seat was in the front seat, but witness accounts indicate that the young girl may not have been in the car seat.  The crash remains under investigation.

Georgia Car Seat Laws

The Georgia Department of Law reports that automobile accidents are the leading cause of death and injuries for children ages one to 12.  The lack of use of car seats is considered a major contributor to the problem.  According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), four out of every ten children under the age of six who died or sustained serious injuries in car accidents were completely unrestrained or improperly restrained.

Under Georgia law, all children under the age of eight and less than 57 inches must ride in the backseat of the car.  Airbags, though lifesaving for adults, can be extremely dangerous for children.  Children ages eight and under must be restrained in a car seat or booster seat appropriate for their age and height.  If your vehicle does not have a backseat, your child weighing over 40 pounds can legally ride in the front seat if properly restrained in a car seat or booster seat.

The NHTSA recommends the following:

  • Infant seat: Children under a year and weighing up to 35 pounds should be secured in a rear-facing car seat.
  • Toddler seat: Toddlers between the ages of one and three and weighing between 20 and 40 pounds can be placed in a forward facing car seat.
  • Booster seat: Between the ages of four and eight, booster seats should be used with the lap and shoulder belt.
  • Safety belt: Once a child is over the age of eight and taller than 4 feet nine inches, he or she should remain sitting in the back seat with a safety belt.

If your family is ever involved in a car accident, contact our experienced Georgia car accident attorneys at Randall F. Rogers, PC today.

Posted in: Automobile Wrecks