Sitting on Safety: Car Seat Safety

Baby child fastened with security belt in safety car seatNow that you’re a mom, you’re carrying precious cargo every time you take a drive with your little one. And that means car seats and booster seats will occupy your back seat for several years as you keep your child safe from harm.

It’s vital to select and correctly use the right car seat when you take your child in your vehicle because car accidents are the leading cause of death for kids ages 1 to 13, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The agency urges parents to pick the right seat and correctly install it.

The American Academy of Pediatrics says you should consider several factors when selecting a seat, including:

  • Your child’s age
  • Your child’s size
  • His/her developmental needs

How your child sits in your vehicle will change as he or she grows, and the NHTSA notes that your car seat should fit the current age and size of your child. There are four car seat types: rear-facing car seat, forward-facing car seat, booster seat and seat belts. The American Academy of Pediatrics offers a chart of car seat types and a list of car seats and car seat manufacturers.

The NHTSA provides a document with car seat recommendations and car seat installations instructions with videos. Once you’ve chosen the correct seat and installed it properly, you need to register the car seat with the manufacturer. This will allow you to receive any recall information and safety notices.

BayCare offers numerous car seat safety inspections with our Nationally Certified Car Seat Technicians at a number of locations throughout Tampa Bay. Visit to find an event near you.