108 E. Main Street
Salisbury, MD 21801
(410) 749-1244


     Having a health fair? Click Here.

Car Seat Safety 

Phone: 410-543-6942



Rear facing?  Front facing?  Booster seats?  
It can all be confusing. Here are some safety guides to help with those answers. 


 

Chart of what car seat should be used for a child depending on their age



 

Rear-Facing Car Seat::

Birth – 12 Months

Your child under age 1 should always ride in a rear-facing car seat. Your child should remain in a rear-facing car seat until he or she reaches the top height or weight limit allowed by your car seat’s manufacturer

1 – 3 Years

Keep your child rear-facing as long as possible, until he or she reaches the top height or weight limit allowed by your car seat’s manufacturer. Once your child outgrows the rear-facing car seat, your child is ready to travel in a forward-facing car seat with a harness and tether.

Forward-Facing Car Seat


4 - 7 Years

Typical age is 4 to 7 years of age but can be as early as 1 to 3 years of age based on height and weight of your child. Keep your child in a forward-facing car seat with a harness and tether until he or she reaches the top height or weight limit allowed by your car seat’s manufacturer. Once your child outgrows the forward-facing car seat with a harness, it’s time to travel in a booster seat, but still in the back seat.

Booster Seat

8 - 12 Years

Typical age is 8 to 12 years of age but can be as early as 4 to 7 years based on the height and weight of your child. Keep your child in a booster seat until he or she is big enough to fit in a seat belt properly. For a seat belt to fit properly the lap belt must lie snugly across the upper thighs, not the stomach. The shoulder belt should lie snugly across the shoulder and chest and not cross the neck or face.

Seat Belt

8 - 12 Years

Remember: your child should still ride in the back seat because it’s safer there.



All information shared from NHTSA: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. 

 

Maryland Kids In Safety Seats. 

Kids In Safety Seats (KISS) is a state-wide, non-profit program funded through a federal grant. Our mission is to reduce injuries and death among Maryland’s children by helping people to obtain and use car seats and booster seats correctly each time a child rides in a motor vehicle

.



Link for Kids In Safety Seats (KISS)

(Website click on image)

 

 


Maryland's Child Passenger Safety Law states: 

   Every child under 8 years old must ride in an appropriate child restraint unless the child is 4 feet, 9 inches or taller.


   Every child from 8 to 16 years old who is not secured in a child restraint must be secured in a vehicle seat belt.


   If your child is not using a booster, try this simple test the next time you ride together in the car. You may find that your    child is not yet ready to use a safety belt without a booster. 


   The 5-Step Test
 
   1. Does the child sit all the way back against the auto seat?
   2. Do the child's knees bend comfortably at the edge of the auto seat?
   3. Does the belt cross the shoulder between the neck and arm?
   4. Is the lap belt as low as possible, touching the thighs?
   5. Can the child stay seated like this for the whole trip? 

 

   If you answered "no" to any of these questions, your child needs a booster seat to make both the shoulder belt and the lap belt fit right for the best crash protection. Your child will be more comfortable, too! 


   Maryland’s child passenger safety laws do not prohibit children from riding in the front seat.  The exception is placing  a rear-facing child in the front seat with an active air bag.  If a driver is unable to turn off an air bag, it is a violation of  law (as well as a terrible danger to the child!) to place a rear-facing child in the front seat.  Click here for air bag video  clip.

   KISS and other child passenger safety experts strongly recommended all children under age 13 ride in the back seat. Research conducted and published in a report by Partners for Child Passenger Safety clearly shows that children are 40% less likely to be seriously injured when properly restrained in the back seat.











 

Return to main page

Instructional videos 



The Ultimate Car Seat Guide will take you step by step in choosing the correct car seat for your baby. 


Link for video on tips for children



Link for information on what car seat a child should have

Interactive guide to help you choose.

 

Link: Is it time for a change? video

Moving from rear facing to forward facing? 

 

Link: Is it time for a change? video

Moving from forward facing to booster? 



  Link: Is it time for a change? video  

Are they ready to leave the booster seat? 





How to install a car seat

Link: Car seat safety video

Safecar.gov 
 



Are used car seats safe?

 


Find a local child safety
seat inspection center


Link: Car seat safety video

Additional Resources:


Have questions about Car Seat Safety?

(click on image)

Safe Kids Worldwide

  (click on image)
 



 

Parents Central        (click on image)

 How to find the right car seat,
register your car seat
and receive recall notices.



Maryland Public Service Announcement: Do your part buckle up 



Maryland Service Announcement: Do you part buckle up