Take a safety-essentials checklist when you go car shopping.

October 03, 2005
Toddler Buckled in Car Seat
Credit: Melpomene/Shutterstock

There are some things you absolutely must consider when choosing a new car—such as it having enough seat belts for all passengers. But there are other safety considerations, as well. Take this checklist with you when you go shopping for a vehicle and find out if the car you're considering meets all of your family's safety requirements.

Here are important nine things to look for:

1.         Automatic door locks

2.         Child safety locks

3.         Anti-pinch/auto-reverse windows

4.         Advanced frontal air bags

5.         Side impact air bags

6.         Interior trunk release

7.         Rearview cameras

8.         Seat belts and child safety seat lower anchors

9.         Sufficient room in the backseat to install a child car seat

•          Can your child’s car seat be installed correctly? It's recommended that you try installing it before you purchase or lease the vehicle.

And remember: Keep kids in the back seat at least through age 12 and be sure all passengers are securely buckled up—front and back.

Source: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration