Shippensburg Police Department

 

Fred A. Scott, Chief of Police

 

60 West Burd Street ~ Shippensburg, Pennsylvania 17257 ~ Department: 717.532.7361 Fax: 717.532.2313
 

          Please pull over to the right for lights and siren....whether they are coming up behind you or driving on the other side of the road...Please pull over toward the right hand side for lights and siren         


 
 

Child Safety Seats


 Car Seat Types

There are four main categories of Carseats on the market today.  These are general guidelines of what they are and when to use them.

Rear facing infant seats

Used rear facing for children from birth up to 20 pounds and about 27".  It is important that your child's head remain about 2" below the top of the seat.  If your child is tall move him to a convertible seat in the rear facing position.  Always keep your child in a seat that is appropriate for his height and weight even if you have to purchase multiple seats as the child grows.

Convertible car seat

Used from birth to 40 pounds.  Use in the rear facing position up to 20 pounds.  Face forward from 20-40 pounds.  Some newer models will hold a child much longer.  Check with the manufacturer for the height and weight limits of a seat.  It is time to move on when the child's head is taller than the back of the seat or the top notch of the harness is positioned below the child's shoulders.

Toddler/booster

Booster seats with 5 point harness can be used with children from 20-40 pounds.  The harness should be removed when the child reaches 40 pounds and the seat can now be used as a belt positioning booster seat.

Belt Positioning Booster

All children who have outgrown their child safety seats height and weight limits should use a belt positioning booster until they are 4'9" tall.  These seats must be used with both the shoulder and the lap belt.  The shoulder belt should fall across the child's chest not the neck or throat.  The lap belt must be low and snug across the thighs, not the stomach.   In addition, the child should be tall enough to sit against the vehicle seat back with her legs bent at the knees and feet hanging down

Notes:

There are so many varieties of Carseats there is one to fit your child's needs even if he is very tall and hasn't quite met the weight limit.  All Carseats sold in the United States have met federal safety standards.  A seat that might be perfect for everybody else might not be perfect for your child.  Find the seat that has the best fit for your child's needs and the right fit for your vehicle.

 

Installing a Car Seat

It is estimated that nearly four out of every five Carseats are installed and used improperly.  Are you using yours correctly?

Location, location, location

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All children under twelve years of age should ride in the back seat.
 

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Placing a child in a rear facing infant seat in the back seat is the safest place for a child.   General guidelines suggest keeping your child in this seat until the age of one and a weight of at least 20 pounds.  It is recommended to keep the child in this position for as long as possible.  Be sure that the seat is  the correct size for your child's height and weight.  When the child is larger a rear facing convertible car seat with a higher weight and height limit is appropriate.
 

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Never, under any circumstances, place a rear facing infant seat in the front seat of a vehicle with an airbag.

Seat position:

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Always read the manufacturer's instructions when installing your car seat.  If you have any questions or something doesn't fit right call the manufacturer to get help.
 

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Follow the manufacturer's instructions for the angle and proper fit of the seat in your car.  Use a rolled up towel to fill in any gaps between the infant seat and your car seat.  It is important that your child is resting in the proper position.
 

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To attain a tight fit with the seat and the safety belt, kneel on the infant seat as you pull.  Test the seat to make sure it is secure.
 

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The seat belt system of newer cars has a lock off mechanism.  Check with your owner's manual or the car manufacturer to be certain that your car has this feature.  If not purchase a locking clip to use with your seat belt system.

 

Child's position:

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All harness straps should fit snugly on your child.
 

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The harness chest clip should be positioned at your child's chest level horizontal to the armpit.
 

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Make sure to thread the shoulder straps through the correct holes so that they fall at or slightly below the child's shoulders.
 

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The National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration states that children should never be wrapped up in a blanket, thick coat or other bulky garments before being strapped into  a restraint system.  Instead position your child in the seat securely then place a blanket over the child and the safety harness.
 

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A convertible seat with a shield should not be used in the rear facing position with a child that is too small for the seat.  The child's head is too close to the shield.
 

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In a seat belt positioning booster seat the shoulder harness of the car's safety belt should fall across the child's chest not the neck or throat.  The lap belt must be low and snug across the thighs, not the stomach.   In addition, the child should be tall enough to sit against the vehicle seat back with her legs bent at the knees and feet hanging down.

 

 Car Seat Finder

Find your child's height and weight in the chart below to find out which car seats on the market will fit your child's needs.

Weight

 Height

  0-20lbs.

0-20"

20"-30"


 

 

 

20-30lbs.

 

20"-30"

30"-40"


 

 

30-40lbs.

 


 

30"-40"

40"-50"

 

40-50lbs.

 


 

30"-40"

40"-50"

50"-60"

50-60lbs.

 


 

 

40"-50"

50"-60"

60-70lbs.

 


 

 

40"-50"

50"-60"

70-80lbs.

 


 

 

40"-50"

50"-60"

80-90lbs.

 


 

 

40"-50"

50"-60"

 

Car Seat Safety Laws by State

Pennsylvania

Age Weight Requirement
Children up until age 4

 

  Must be restrained in a child safety seat

 

All children age 4 until age 8

 

  Must be restrained in a high back booster or proper fitting booster seat

 

8-18   Must wear a safety belt

Pennsylvania Department of Transportation - Child Passenger Safety

"child restraint system" generally refers to any device which meets the standards of the United States Department of Transportation designed to restrain, seat or position children.

In most cases these laws are describing a passenger motor vehicle.  Refer to  your individual state's safety laws for information on the exceptions for other vehicles such as buses and hired vehicles

Child Passenger Safety

 

Shippensburg Police Department  Phone - 717-532-7361  Fax - 717-532-2313        Last Modified :01/30/12 11:28 PM          Copyright 2008