Car accidents are the leading cause of death for children between the ages of three and 14. One of the biggest steps a parent can take to prevent their child from suffering a serious injury or fatality is to have an effective child safety seat, if appropriate. In New Jersey, children under the age of eight who weigh less than 80 pounds must ride in a child safety seat or booster seat in the rear seat of a vehicle.
Once a child weighs over 80 pounds or is older than 8-years-old, they no longer are legally required to ride in a child safety seat. This does not mean, however, that it is not in their best interest to continue to ride on a safety seat or booster seat. The size of a child will change the effectiveness of a seatbelt. Parents must determine the best options for their children.
Babies from birth to 12 months old should always ride in a rear-facing seat. Children between the ages of one and three should stay in the rear-facing seat until the height of the child exceeds the manufacturer’s recommended height for the seat. It is at this time that the child may begin riding in a front-facing car seat that is secured to the vehicle by a harness. Between the ages of four and seven, the child may outgrow the forward facing seat and begin to use a booster seat. Children over the age of eight should continue to use a booster seat until they are big enough to wear a seatbelt properly.
If you or your child has been injured in a car accident in New Jersey you believe was due to the negligence of another motorist, please contact the experienced Princeton car crash attorneys at Lependorf & Silverstein. Call us today at 609-240-0040 to schedule your no-cost consultation.