Booster Seat Law...
is the New Law?
of Oct. 7, 2009,* Ohioís children are required to use belt-positioning booster
seats once they outgrow their child safety seats (usually at 4 years old and 40
pounds) until they are 8 years old, unless they are at least 4 feet, 9 inches (57
revised child restraint law requires the following:
less than 4 years old or 40 pounds must use a child safety seat.
Children* less than 8 years old, unless they are at least 4 feet, 9 inches
tall must use a booster seat.
ages 8-15 must use a child safety seat or safety belt.
enforcement will issue warnings only for the first six months. Full
enforcement will begin on April 7, 2010. Fines will range from a minimum
of $25 to a maximum of $75 per occurrence. A booster seat can be purchased
for as little as $15. Donít
wait for a warning or ticket!
isnít the seat belt enough?
Seat belts were designed for adults and can leave a child at risk of serious
injury in a motor vehicle crash.
seats raise a child up so the shoulder belt fits correctly,
by lying over the middle of the shoulder and the center of the chest Ė the
strongest parts of a childís body. The booster seat also positions
the lap belt across the childís upper hips or thighs, not over the
stomach. Without a booster, the lap belt can ride up onto the stomach and
cause hip, stomach and spinal cord injuries in a crash.
a booster seat with a seat belt instead of using a seat belt alone for a
child this age reduces the risk of injury in a crash by 59 percent. Researchers
with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimate
that more than half the children killed in motor vehicles in motor vehicle
crashes each year would be alive today if seat belt use and child safety
seat use were at 100 percent.
is the law important? Most Ohio children are not using booster seats.
vehicle traffic remains the leading cause of death for Ohio children aged 4
to 7 years.
From 1999 to 2006, at least 34 Ohio children aged 4 to 7 years died as
occupants in motor vehicles (Source: Office of Vital Statistics).
2007, Ohioís booster seat use rate for children aged 4 to 8 years was only
18 percent, one of the lowest in the country.
(Source: Partners for Child Passenger Safety). Research
studies have found that child restraint laws are very effective at
increasing appropriate child restraint usage (Source: CDC
the best booster to buy?
Injury Prevention Program does not endorse any particular child safety or
Itís important to properly use one that meets current federal motor
vehicle safety standards and fits well in your vehicle. The following
resources may be of help in selecting a booster seat:
should my child move from a booster seat to a seat belt?
booster seat is designed to place a child higher on the vehicle seat so that the
lap/shoulder belt fits correctly.
Seat belt fit varies from car to car and from person to person. It is
safest for your child to remain in a booster seat until the adult seat belt
system fits his/her properly as follows:
information on proper fitting can be found at: http://www.carseat.org/
child is tall enough to sit against the vehicle seat back with his/her knees
bent at the edge of the seat without slouching.
shoulder belt lies in middle of his/her chest and shoulder, not his/her neck
lap belt is low and snug across the upper thighs, not the belly.
child can stay in this position comfortably throughout the entire trip.