According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, half of the booster
seats that are available for kids to use are not a guaranteed, proper
fit with all seat belts. The IIHS expressed its concerns as it unveiled
its list of this year’s best-fitting car booster seats. Click on
the link below for a list of the booster seats that the IIHS tested and
find out how they fared.
Although there are now more choices available for purchase–the IIHS listed 31 booster seats on its Best Bets list and 5 on its Good BETS list–it named six booster seats that it wants parents to completely stay away from. These included four Evenflo products–Chase, Express, Sightseer, Generations 65–and two Safety 1st products– the Alpha Omega Elite and the All-in-One. The IIHS tested 83 booster seats in total. If your child was injured in a car accident and you believe that the booster seat malfunctioned or was designed poorly, please contact our child car seat law firm to request your free case evaluation.
Booster seats are designed for kids that are no longer small enough to use a forward-facing car seat. They are supposed to elevate a child seated in the car just enough so that a that regular safety belt can fit securely around the body. It is important that the booster seat helps position a child so that the shoulder and lap belts fall properly and securely around him/her so that this minimizes the chances of serious injuries during a collision. According to statistics, kids age4-8 are 45% less likely to get hurt in a collision if they are using a booster seat with a seat belt.
IIHS says it can be difficult for a parent to know which booster seat is safer just by comparing features and prices. It also expressed dismay that there are still more seats that require parents to check their fit to make sure that they work with a safety belt. 41 booster seats received CHECK FIT ratings.
Our products liability lawyers cannot stress the importance of making sure that your booster seat works properly with a seat belt. Otherwise, during an auto collision your child could end up being thrown against the front seat or out of the vehicle, striking his/her head on the roof of the car during a rollover accident (potentially suffering a traumatic brain injury or a spinal cord injury), or suffering a seat belt-related injury (potentially experiencing organ damage.)
Right now, the National Highway Traffic Safety doesn’t assess how booster seats do in terms of how well they fit with all seat belts. While manufacturers have been urged to improve belt fit, they are not required to do this.
Booster evaluations for 2011, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
Car-safety group: Half of child booster seats pose risks, USA Today, October 13, 2011
Related Web Resources:
Booster Seat Safety, Baby Center
Child Seats, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Child Restraint Laws
More Blog Posts:
NHTSA Announces New Child Seat Guidelines, Product Liability Law Blog, March 21, 2011
Child Passenger Safety Week: Protecting Your Child with the Proper Child Safety Seat, Product Liability Law Blog, September 22, 2010
IIHS’s New Booster Seat Ratings Offers 9 Best Bets; Doesn’t Recommend 11 Child Safety Seats Because of Poor Fit with Seat Belts, Product Liability Law Blog, January 6, 2010
Our child injury lawyers are familiar with the types of injuries that can happen when a child is not properly secured in a child safety seat, a booster seat, or by a seat belt. Contact our booster seat law firm to request your free case evaluation.