Being a safe driver is more than just the decisions you make on the road, it’s also about the choices made before you get behind the wheel or buckle up a loved one. Drivers who have children in their car are responsible for their safety. Follow these tips on child safety seats to keep everyone safe and buckled up.
The right seat for the right time
Kids grow fast and it’s important to ensure you have the right car seat for the age, weight and height. According to Transport Canada, there are four stages to determine the proper child safety seat:
Stage one: rear-facing seats
Designed for newborns and infants, these rear-facing seats are designed to keep a child in the safest position possible if an accident occurs. Transport Canada suggests these seats should include a five-point harness system for a child and be secured in a vehicle according to the manufacturer’s manual.
Stage two: forward-facing seats
When a child is at least one year old, weighs 10 kilograms and is walking, it’s time for a forward-facing seat. These seats also have a five-point harness system and are designed to accommodate children until they weigh 18 kilograms or until they are at least six years old.
Stage three: booster seats
Transport Canada advises booster seats for children under the age of nine and, weigh between 18 and 36 kilograms or are less than 145 centimetres tall. The height of booster seats can be adjusted, which allows seat belts to properly secure the child.
Stage four: seat belts
Once a child has grown tall enough for vehicle seat belts to be properly positioned on their lap and shoulder without a booster seat, approximately 150 centimetres or taller, regular seat belts can be used.
As car seat laws and requirements vary by province be sure to check your local provincial government websites for regional specifics.
Always pay close attention to recall notices issued for child car seats as these notify consumers on product deficiencies and recall procedures. Be sure to register your car seat purchase with the manufacturer, if available.
Safety beyond car seats
In addition to finding the proper child car seat, we offer other helpful tips to stay safe behind the wheel:
- Ensure your vehicle is clutter free – Having a messy or cluttered car is a hazard for the driver and passenger(s). Learn why clutter in your vehicle is a risk.
- Prepare for road trips – Many families go on road trips and we created a road trip checklistto ensure all passengers have a safe journey.
- Know how to drive safe: Brush up on safe driving tips.
- Ensure you have the right family car insurance to meet your needs. A BrokerLink brokerwill take the time to understand your needs and provide you with options for the best insurance protection.