As a parent, you want to do whatever you can to ensure your child is safe while you’re driving them around. By understanding child passenger safety laws in Texas, you can reduce your child’s risk of sustaining an injury. If your son or daughter suffers from an injury as a result of a car crash that was not your fault, it is in your best interest to consult an experienced Texas car accident lawyer at Begum Law Group today.
An attorney at our firm will inform you of your legal options and may be able to help you recover compensation for child’s medical bills and other damages. To schedule a free consultation of your case with The Law Giant, contact us today at (866) 523-4167.
Why are Car Seats Necessary?
You may have to suddenly swerve or stop your vehicle while you’re driving. If a car seat does not restrain your child, they are likely to incur a serious injury. Since your child’s brain and body is still developing, they are particularly prone to serious harm after a car accident.
Your child’s small size can make it easy for them to fly out of the vehicle and suffer from a traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, or another injury that can hurt their quality of life and development for years to come. Restraining your child in a car seat can reduce their risk for injury in a crash by 71%, according to Safe Ride 4 Kids, an educational resource for information about child passenger safety.
Child Safety Seat Laws in Texas
The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) has outlined child safety seat guidelines that you must adhere to if you’re driving with a child within the state. These guidelines depend on the age and weight of the children.
Birth to 2 Years of Age
Children who are between 0 and 2 years of age, or up to the maximum allowable weight for a certain car seat (this number varies depending on the manufacturer) must be placed in a rear-facing car seat. When placing your child in a such a car seat, you need to secure the chest clip evenly with your child’s armpits and ensure harness straps are fit snugly to their body. Also, be sure to follow all of the manufacturer’s installation and use directions.
2 to 4 Years of Age
Some manufacturers recommend a forward-facing safety seat for children aged 2 to 4 years – depending on the child’s height and weight. Be sure to use the seat belt or lower anchors to secure your child’s safety seat but refrain from using both. In addition, pay close attention to the installation and use directions set forth by the manufacturer.
4 to 8 Years of Age
If your child is between 4 and 8-years-old, use a booster seat that is right for their particular height and weight. You should fasten the lap belt across their thighs, not their stomach, and make sure the shoulder belt rests across your child’s chest.
If your child passenger is over the age of 8, they should be secured with a shoulder and lap seat belt. It is also important to note that no one under the age of 13 should sit in the front of a car.
What Happens If Seat Belt Safety is Disregarded?
TxDOT takes child passenger safety very seriously, and has therefore implemented the Click It or Ticket program. It is designed to protect drivers and passengers, and provides valuable Texas car seat safety information for parents. Under this program, drivers will receive a ticket of at least $250 if a child is improperly restrained in a car seat.
Contact The Law Giant for Help Today
Begum Law Group is well-versed in child passenger safety in Texas. If you have a question related to properly protecting a child passenger, or are looking for skilled legal representation for your car accident case, reach out to us right away. To schedule a free, initial evaluation of your case, contact us today at (866) 523-4167.