Safety  1N Num3ersThe ProblemThe FactsWhat you can do

We know what works

NHTSA’s Countermeasures That Work recommends effective actions that communities can take to ensure that all children are properly protected in cars
(Download Report).

Parents and grandparents can

  • Find out if your child is in the right seat for his or her age and size (www.SaferCar.gov/TheRightSeat)
  • Read the instructions and labels that come with your child’s car seat and read the vehicle owner’s manual for important information on installing the seat in your particular vehicle.
  • Go to your local car seat inspection station to have your seat checked by a Certified Child Passenger Safety Technician. If you move the car seat back and forth between two vehicles, have the seat checked with both vehicles. The technician will make sure you can install the seat correctly yourself.Find CAr Seat Inspection Statation Location near you

  • Use the LATCH lower anchors or seat belt to install your car seat and use the top tether to secure forward-facing car seats.
  • Register your car seat and booster seat so you will be informed if there is a safety recall on your model (www-odi. nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/problems/recalls/ register/childseat/index.cfm).
  • File a safety complaint if you believe that your child seat contains a safety defect (www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/ivoq).
  • Always wear your seat belt to set a good example. Unbuckled drivers are more likely to have unrestrained children in the car.

Healthcare providers can

  • Ask parents what type of seat they are using during each visit.
  • Provide educational information to parents and refer them to local car seat inspection stations for additional help.
  • Prominently display the four types of child restraints (rear-facing car seats, forward-facing car seats, booster seats, and seat belts).

States and communities can

  • Include car seats and booster seats whenever you conduct high-visibility seat belt enforcement campaigns.
  • Work with youth groups, schools, traffic safety agencies, law enforcement agencies, and public health agencies to include new immigrants and high-risk populations in educational campaigns and outreach.

The right seat at the right time, every time – and in the back seat

Rear-facing infant car seat

Rear-facing infant car seat

Your child under age 1 must always ride in the back seat in a rearfacing car seat, and should remain rear-facing as long as possible.

Forward-facing car seat

Forward-facing car seat

Keep your child rear-facing as long as possible. Once your child outgrows the rearfacing car seat, he or she is ready to travel in a forwardfacing car seat with a harness – still in the back seat.

Booster seat

Booster seat

Keep your child in a forward-facing car seat with a harness until he or she reaches the top height or weight limit allowed by your car seat’s manufacturer. Then it is time to travel in a booster seat – still in the back seat.

Seat Belt

Seat Belt

Keep your child in a booster seat until he or she is big enough to fit in a seat belt properly – proper fit means the lap portion is snug across the upper thighs and the shoulder portion crosses the chest. The back seat is the safest place.

DOT HS 811 838 9848HTML-091313-v2