Child Passenger Safety Week - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Child Passenger Safety Week

WILLIAMSON COUNTY, IL (KFVS) -

In 2014, according to the Missouri Department of Transportation, 17 children under eight years old were killed in motor crashes in Missouri.

Thirty-one percent of those children were not restrained in a car seat or safety belt.

Health educator, Adrienne Bramlett, says infants need to be in rear-facing car seats.

"It’s required up until the time they’re one years old and 20 pounds," Bramlett said.

After getting past the 20-pound mark, children then can move to a convertible seat, which can be rear-faced and forward faced. "We do recommend, however that children stay in rear-faced car seats until they are two years old."

Health officials say it also depends on the weight requirements on the car seat you buy.

And when shopping for car seats, the most important aspect of those seats is the internal harness. 

"Make sure internal harness within the seat is tight on the child’s body  because that’s what’s going to keep them protected," Bramlett said. "You want them to be in place before a crash occurs because you want them to stay in there and stay protected.”

After the forward-facing seat, you can then switch your child to a booster seat, these are usually for children between the ages of 4 and eight years old.

It is required in Illinois, Kentucky and Missouri that children remain in a booster seat until they are eight years old, but there are exceptions.

If your child is 4’9" or taller and if your child weighs more than 80 pounds, then they no longer have to be in a booster seat, but these exceptions are only specific to certain states.

For Illinois law, click here.

For Missouri law, click here.

For Kentucky, click here.

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