Generally speaking, when most parents think about car seats they still imagine their little ones as babies or toddlers, but they may need to consider their older children needing one as well. It’s a common misconception that a child that has passed the toddler years no longer requires a car seat, but such is not the case. Although it may tempting to want to ditch the bulky seats the instant you get the opportunity to, you just can’t jeopardize their safety. It’s the law in most places now in 2018 to have a child in some form of seating arrangement, so check with your local area to ensure you are following their specific guidelines.
According to AAA, kiddos that are between the ages of 8 and 17 years old must be in a seat belt no matter what. Those that are in between the ages of 4 and 8 years old require a booster seat if they are under the 40 pounds weight limit, or they are are under 4 foot 9 inches tall. Kids under 4 years old still need to be a regular car seat that fits them properly, even though you may think they don’t need one anymore.
Why would a parent not want their child in a car seat? It’s not to harm them, but usually because they’re exhausted of lugging it around from car to car, and taking it on every vacation, and having to leave it with the babysitter, and so on. It becomes tiresome, without question, but it’s part of parenting and really not very challenging to do the right thing. In the coming years it may be even more restricting on the state to state requirements as pediatric car safety is of the utmost importance.
The best thing to do if you just aren’t sure where your little guy or gal fits in to these guidelines, is to measure them at home. Check their height and weight to see which seat is ideal for them to travel safely before you get a traffic ticket, or even worse, get into an accident.