Booster seats cut chance of injury in Half
In the November issue of the leading journal, Pediatrics*, a team of doctors
in Philadelphia published their findings comparing the chance of a 4-8
year-old child suffering an injury during a car accident if they were
wearing a seat belt v. sitting in a booster seat.
They studied over 7,000 children, involved in over 6,000 car crashes
from data across 16 states. The sample represented over 100,000
children in over 100,000 car crashes.
What did they find?
If your child who is over 40 pounds but less than 4'9" tall
is in a booster seat, they reduce their chance of being injured
compared to a child wearing a seat belt, by about 50%!
So please, if your child is between 40 pounds and 4'9", have them
in a booster seat. It will eliminate about half their risk of being injured
in a car accident.
(Full text of article: http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content/full/124/5/1281)
Dr. Arthur Lavin
In a previous post, we discussed the new Ohio law
on booster seats:
The Car Seat Safety Law in Ohio
Recently the Ohio legislature passed a law requiring children under a
certain age and/or height to be in a car seat.
Prior to this law being passed, it was the law that a child be in a car
seat from birth through either age 4 years or 40 pounds.
Now, starting in October, 2009, a citation will be issued to any parent
whose child is not in a child seat through either age 8 years or 4'9".
Starting in April, 2010, a citation will be issued for second offenses of this law.
The current recommendations from Advanced Pediatrics are as follows:
- All people riding in a car should have their pelvis and shoulder secured
- For anyone less than 4'9" tall, that requires some device to achieve that security
- From birth to age one year and 20 pounds, one should be in an infant car seat, facing backwards
- From that point until 40 pounds, one should be in an infant car seat, facing forwards
- From 40 pounds until 4'9" one should be in a booster seat.
Note these key items:
You should not face forward until you are both 1 year old and 20 pounds in weight.
The shift from infant seat to booster seat occurs at 40 pounds, the age does not matter.
The end of needing any device takes place at 4'9" . For this change neither age nor weight matter.
These guidelines have nothing to do with a child being mature, or grown up,
they only reflect the physics of how bodies can be safely secured during
and accident. If you follow these guidelines, your child(ren) is far less likely
to be hurt if an accident occurs.
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