If you’ll be driving through New York State during any part of your holiday drive this year, you might want to get out a measuring tape.
As of today, the New York State DMV is expanding its child restraint law to include children all the way up to their eighth birthday. Kids under age eight will have to be restrained in a carseat or booster seat.
That’s up a whole year from a law passed in 2005 that required kids remain restrained in a special seat before age seven. But there is still one way to get around it – if your kid is more than four feet nine inches tall or more than one hundred pounds, they qualify to be out of a seat. The bigger kids must use a seat belt that has a lap belt and shoulder harness.
For most parents, this is no big deal – they’ve already got a booster seat in the car because their kid has had to ride in one for the last several years. But if your state doesn’t extend this far, and you’re planning a drive through NY, it’s time to pull it out of the attic.
And if you haven’t heard the latest statistics: researchers at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Center for Injury Research and Prevention found there’s a forty-five percent reduction in risk of injury for kids in booster seats in an accident than for kids wearing just a seatbelt. Might be worth it even if they’re seven-and-a-half and moaning.
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