Parents everywhere strive to ensure their children are safe at all times, which includes selecting an appropriate car seat for young children. However, even the most well intentioned parents can make critical mistakes when installing their child's car seat. Car seat installation mistakes can leave your child vulnerable to devastating injuries in the event of a car accident. The following is a look at some of the most common car seat installation errors:
- Seat too loose: Many parents simply do not install their child's car seat tight enough. To test your seat, grab it at the base with two hands and attempt to move the seat. If it moves more than one inch to the left, right, or forward, then it needs to be tightened. A loose seat can crash into the back of the front seat in the event of a crash, injuring your child's head or other part of the body.
- Facing forward too early: Some parents are in a rush to turn their infant's car seat forward facing. While parents might be anxious to see their child's face while driving, safety organizations now recommend that children remain rear facing until at least two years of age, if not even longer. Rear facing offers superior protection for the neck, back, and spine of young children.
- Selecting the wrong seat: It is also important that you research potential car seats and select the right one. Your child will need to start out life in a rear facing car seat that meets crash test standards. At around one year or sooner, your child should move into a rear facing convertible car seat. At two or later, your child can transition to forward facing in their convertible seat. Eventually, your child ages four or older can move into a booster seat where they will remain for some time. Consult with a car seat safety technician if you have questions as to what seat is appropriate for your child.
- Harness is too loose: It is understandable that parents of young children are hesitant to place anything too tight on their infant's or young children's bodies. However, it is essential that you adequately secure your child's harness before setting off on the road. A child who is loose in his or her harness can come out of the seat in the event of a crash.
- Not using a booster seat: Children between 40 and 80 pounds and up to 4'9" should ride in a booster seat. A booster seat is necessary to lift the child up to the level so that the seat belt fits him or her correctly. Keep your child in a booster seat as long as possible so they are protected.
Greenberg, Stone, & Urbano: Dedicated and Zealous Miami Personal Injury Attorneys
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car or traffic accident in South Florida, the Miami Personal Injury Attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano are here to help. Our exceptional firm offers over 130 collective years of experience representing personal injury accident victims across South Florida. Our dedicated lawyer staff provides legal representation of unmatched excellence, evidenced by our array of awards. We received an AV rating from Martindale Hubbell and are ranked as a top firm in South Florida by the Miami Herald. Contact our firm as soon as possible to start on the road to protecting your legal rights. Call us at (888) 499-9700 or (305) 595-2400 or you can visit our website to schedule your initial consultation.