Florida Baby Car Seat Laws
In 2014, motor vehicle crashes were a leading cause of death for children ages 0-12 and the number one cause of death ages 3-14. Unfortunately, of the fatalities, 35% were not buckled into their seat. When you choose to use safety seats, you’re reducing the risk of fatality by 71% for infants, 54% for toddlers and 50% for older children and adults.
While it’s simply smart to use a car seat for infants, it’s also the law. In Florida, the child car seat law states:
- Any child under 5 must be seated in a federally approved child car seat.
- Children 3 and younger must use a separate car seat or the vehicle’s integrated child seat.
- Children ages 4-5 years old must be in a separate carrier, the vehicle’s integrated seat, or a booster seat.
- Anyone under the age of 18 must be in a seatbelt.
While the laws only mention age, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend following height guidelines rather than that or weight. The use of booster seats, especially, is often done incorrectly. Children should be in a booster until they are 4’9” tall as the safety of the child rests on the positioning of the seatbelt. A child can safely come out of a booster when the seatbelt fits low across the child’s lap instead of their stomach, and across their chest instead of their neck. We urge you to always lead by example and buckle up yourselves too.
Another problem parents find when using car seats is that they think their installation methods are correct when they are not. Car seats can be finicky and must be installed just so. Even if you think you’re right, it always a good idea to double check. To ensure proper usage, you can get help from a child passenger safety technician.
If you’ve been in an accident in Central Florida, and need help to get compensation for injury, call the Troutman Law Firm at 407-647-5002. We’ll set up a complimentary consultation and discuss your case.