consult
X

Request a Free Consultation

Please fill out the form below and we will be in touch soon.

SPEAK TO AN ATTORNEY NOW SE HABLA ESPAÑOL

Broward 24/7: (954)764-7377 Toll Free: (877) 566-8759

Palm Beach 24/7: (561) 209-2100 HOME & HOSPITAL VISITS

Jeffrey M. Braxton

jeffreybraxton@myinjurysf.com

Brooke E. Perez

brookeperez@myinjurysf.com

Robert H. Stein

robertstein@myinjurysf.com

Craig A. Posner

craigposner@myinjurysf.com

Broward 24/7: (954)764-7377 Toll Free: (877) 566-8759

Palm Beach 24/7: (561) 209-2100 HOME & HOSPITAL VISITS

Follow Us

Blog

Blog Home

Keep Your Kid Safe in a Florida Crash with the Right Car Seat

Not sure which car seat is right for your child?

You have an important job as a parent—providing a safe experience for your child while he or she is riding in a vehicle. Thousands of children are injured or killed in Florida car crashes each year, and the right car seat can protect your child from getting hurt.

Choosing the right car seat is essential for keeping your child safe, but with so many options out there, it can be difficult to know which seat is the right one – something that is based on your child’s age, height, weight and other needs.

In this guide, we’re going to go over the different types of car seats available, offer tips on knowing when children are ready to graduate from one stage to the next, and go over proper installation techniques.

Consider these guidelines based on your child’s individual characteristics.

Infants and Toddlers

Rear-facing seats are required for infants and smaller toddlers. These seats are safest for children until they have outgrown them. A rear-facing seat may be static, or it may convert to a forward-facing seat.

Check the car seat manufacturer’s recommendations for height and weight limits. A rear-facing seat secures the child in a five-point harness and is normally rated for toddlers up to 35 pounds.

Some infant car seats have a base that stays in the vehicle while the car seat can move in and out. Not only can these types of seats be carried around with you, often they will pair with a stroller, so you can safely move your child from one to the other without disturbing them.

You can purchase more than one base for use in multiple vehicles.

If your baby slouches or leans inside the seat, you can roll up two blanket and use it to stabilize your child on both sides. You should not place any padding behind or under your baby for safety reasons.

A convertible seat can be used for an infant and then switched to a forward-facing seat for when your child exceeds the rear-facing weight limit. They do not come with a base that allows the seat to be removed and carried with you.

Fort Lauderdale Personal Injury Lawyer

These seats typically have a higher weight limit of up to 50 pounds, though some go higher.

You can also purchase a 3-in-1 seat that transitions from a rear-facing seat to a forward-facing seat, then to a booster for an older child. These seats are larger than others, so make sure they fit in your vehicle before you purchase one.

It is important to note that both convertible and 3-in-1 seats typically have separate weight limits for rear-facing and forward facing, and that often they are rated for higher rear-facing weights.

Why does this matter? Because studies have shown that children are safer (at any weight) when in rear-facing seats. The longer you can keep your child facing the rear, the safer they will be.

Toddlers and Preschool Children

As mentioned above, children who are too big for a rear-facing car seat can use a forward-facing seat with a harness. The harness will keep them safer than a seat without a harness.

Use this type of seat until your child outgrows the height and weight restrictions as listed by the car seat manufacturer. Typically, these seats are used until a child is at least four years old – but remember that weight and height limits matter face more than age. Many parents make the mistake of putting their kids in “older” seats before they’re ready.

Some vehicles are equipped with built-in forward-facing seats. These built-in seats should not be used unless your child is at least two years old. Check your vehicle owner’s manual for information about height and weight restrictions.

School-Aged Children

Children of elementary school age can use a booster seat once they have outgrown a forward-facing seat. Again, this means checking height and age requirements. Booster seats are recommended for children who are under 4’ 9” and are typically younger than 12 years of age. Booster seats should always be placed in the back seat of the vehicle.

Older Children

Older children must use lap and shoulder seat belts once they are tall enough to wear them. Children younger than 13 years of age should still ride in the back seat for maximum safety.

Installing a Car Seat

Car seats can be installed with the existing seat belts or the LATCH system, which stands for Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children. If your vehicle was made after September 1, 2002, it is likely equipped with two lower anchors between the seat cushions and one upper tether behind the seat, on the ceiling or on the floor.

Both seat belt and LATCH systems provide security in a car accident. It’s best to use only one system unless the car seat manufacturer recommends using both seat belts and LATCH. Seat belts must be tightly adjusted for safety.

Lower anchors are approved for a maximum combined weight of 65 pounds, which includes your child and the car seat. Check the car seat manufacturer’s recommendations to know if a certain seat is appropriate for your child.

Boca Raton Child Injury Accident Lawyer

When you follow these tips for proper car seat use, you can protect your child from injury or death in a Florida auto accident.

 

 

About the Author: 

Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for the South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.

 

Blog Home

decor

Office Location and Service Areas

The Injury Law Firm of South Florida handles cases throughout Florida from their Fort Lauderdale office. Here is a list of some of the counties and cities we serve:

Martin County

Breeze Park, Jensen Beach, Jupiter, Sewall’s, Stuart  Point Ocean.

St. Lucie County

Fort Pierce, Port St Lucie.

Lee County

Bonita Springs, Cape Coral, Estero, East Dunbar, Fort Myers, Fort Myers Beach, Sanibel.

Palm Beach County

Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, West Palm Beach, and throughout the greater Palm Beach area.

Broward County

Coral Springs, Deerfield Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Lauderhill, Hallandale, Hallandale Beach, Hollywood,  Pembroke Pines, Pompano BeachMargate, Miramar, North Lauderdale, Plantation, Sunrise, Tamarac, Weston, and throughout the greater Broward area.

Miami-Dade County

Aventura, Coral Gables, Hialeah, Kendall, Miami, Miami Beach, North Miami, South Miami,  Beach, Sunny Isles, and throughout the greater Miami-Dade area.

Collier County