Minnesota Safety Council

Child Passenger Safety: Buckle Up Right

When child safety seats and safety belts are used correctly, they can reduce the risk of death by up to 70%. But finding the right combination can be confusing.
  • How do you know if you should be using an infant-only seat or a convertible seat?
  • What are booster seats and why do kids need them until they're eight years old or are four feet nine inches tall?
  • How do you know when a child is ready for your car's safety belt/shoulder strap?
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that all infants and toddlers should ride in a Rear-Facing Car Safety Seat until they are two (2) years of age or until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by their car safety seat's manufacturer.

A child who is both under age 8 and shorter than 4 feet 9 inches is required to be fastened in a child safety seat that meets federal safety standards. Under this law, a child cannot use a seat belt alone until they are age 8, or 4 feet 9 inches tall. It is recommended to keep a child in a booster based on their height rather than their age. Check the instruction book or label of the child safety seat to be sure it is the right seat for your child's weight and height.


Get free expert help in a Minnesota community near you:
Minnesota Child Passenger Safety Checkup Clinic Calendar

Snappy Safari: Kids, buckle up and take a ride through the jungle!
Safe Kids Minnesota
Good Going! Adventures in Safety magazine

Brochures Fact Sheets
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