Car Seat Safety and Inspection
There’s no time like the present to start shopping for an infant car seat! You’ll have to have one installed in your vehicle before you can take your new baby home from the hospital—and the hospital does not provide car seats to new parents.
Infant car seat safety checklist
- All infants should ride in a rear-facing car seat—whether it’s a dedicated infant seat, or a convertible car seat.
- If your first car seat is for infants only, then you will need to switch to a rear-facing convertible car seat once your baby reaches the maximum height and/or weight limit.
- Keep your child in a rear-facing seat for as long as possible, because it’s much safer for little ones. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children stay rear-racing in a convertible car seat until at least age 2, or until they reach the maximum height and/or weight limit.
- Rear-facing car seats should never be placed in front of an airbag.
- Recline the car seat slightly, at a 30- to 45-degree angle.
- Harness straps should be positioned through the slots that are at or below baby’s shoulder level, with the harness clip over the chest at armpit level.
- Tighten the harness straps snugly, so that you can’t pinch any slack.
- Follow your car seat’s instructions for installation, using the correct belt path for your car. Make sure there is less than one inch of slack in the belt path.
Car seat inspections
You can call the BayCare Customer Service Center at 1-800-BayCare (1-800-229-2273) to learn about car seat inspections and private installation lessons, or go online to register for a car seat inspection at a BayCare hospital. You can also visit SeatCheck.org to search for certified car seat safety technicians in your area.
Car Seat Safety
Tonya Randolph discusses car seat safety. Learn more about the Children’s Wellness and Safety Center