Monday, March 21st, 2011
The American Academy of Pediatrics and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommended today that toddlers should ride in rear-facing car seats until age 2-a full year longer than the previous 1-year guideline. After 2, children should sit in booster seats until they are past 4’ 9”–usually around age 12–and children younger than 13 should always sit in the back seat, the two groups said.
The change was based on U.S. crash data from the past five years, which found that 1-year-olds are five times less likely to be injured in a crash if they are in a rear-facing car seat than if they are in a forward-facing seat. Children younger than 2 have relatively large heads and small necks, and in a front-facing car seat the force of a crash can jerk the child’s head, causing spinal cord injuries, MSNBC reports.
Had the new guidelines been in place over the past 15 years, as many as 1,000 children may have escaped injury in car crashes, according to MSNBC.
Parents of children in the 8-12 range are no doubt wondering how they will possible convince their kids to sit in boosted seats for even more time than they’d expected to.
Will you be putting your tween in a booster seat?
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