Child Seat & Restraint Resources
Keeping Kids Safe in Vehicles
In Minnesota, three out of four child safety seats are used incorrectly and many parents aren’t aware of the restraining steps a child should progress through as they grow. A vehicle is the most dangerous place for children and crashes are the leading killer of children under age 14.
Steps of Safety Seat Progression for Growing Children
How to Properly Secure Your Child
Common Child Passenger Safety Mistakes
- Turning a child from a rear-facing restraint to a forward-facing restraint too soon. American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) now recommends keeping children rear-facing until 2 years old if possible.
- Restraint is not secured tight enough. It should not shift more than one inch side-to-side or out from the seat.
- Harness on the child is not tight enough. If you can pinch harness material, it’s too loose.
- Retainer clip is up too high or too low. The retainer clip should be at the child’s armpit level.
- The child is in the wrong restraint. Don’t rush your child into a seat belt.
Give Kids a Boost! Booster Seats Are the Law in Minnesota
Booster seats lift a child up to help the child fit into standard adult seat belts. Children must start riding in a booster seat when they have outgrown a forward-facing harness restraint (typically age 4 or 40/60 pounds). Children should remain in a booster seat until age 8 or 4 feet 9 inches tall, whichever comes first. (This booster seat recommendation is based on a child’s height rather than age.)
Minnesota law requires a child who is both under age 8 and shorter than 4 feet 9 inches to be fastened in a child safety seat or booster. Learn more about Minnesota’s Child Passenger Safety Law.
Additional Safety Seat Resources
The Pregnant Woman’s Guide to Buckling Up (Plus a quick guide to child safety seats.)
Office of Traffic Safety: Child Passenger Safety