Her boys are getting big...
But at five and six years old, they haven’t outgrown their booster seats.
Mom Christine Dore-Smith puts a premium on safety.
“We do a lot of driving and commuting back to school and different activities and things like that, I’ve done research and read how important it is for kids to be in a safety seat,” says Dore-Smith.
Car crashes are the leading killer of children between 1 and 12 years old in the U.S. while people are protective of babies, they are less inclined to strap in their children.
“A lot of parents feel by the age of three, they don’t need to be in any sort of device. Kids need to be in boosters until they’re 4ft 9 inches. So it’s a long time, but it is important,” says Lina Quintana, child advocate with Golisano Children’s Hospital.
In states where booster seats are law, deaths among six and seven year olds dropped by 25%. The American academy of pediatrics recommends children ride in car seats with a harness until they are four or too big for the seat. After that, they should use a booster seat until they're between 8 and 12 years old, or 4 feet, 9 inches tall.
Booster seats don’t need bells and whistles- their primary purpose is to elevate, or ‘boost’ kids to a higher position. So that seat belts, designed for adults, hit them in the right spot.
“Let’s say you put a three year old in just a seat belt in your vehicle seat, the seat belt cuts across the abdomen where very important organs are, and they can suffer in crashes badly. The booster lifts the child so the seat belt fits where it needs to be, across the lap and across the shoulder,” says Quintana.
Once children are able to get themselves into and out of their car seat, it’s important to get them ‘on-board’ with safety.
“When they’re in other people’s cars they’ve actually corrected people or gone back and fixed it they way they want it to be on them because they’ve been taught,” says Dore- Smith.
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