Atlanta personal injury lawyer David Van Sant is an expert in laws designed to keep drivers safe. As an advocate for children and car accident victims of all ages, he often finds himself speaking with clients about child safety seat requirements.
According to Van Sant, in 2011 Georgia passed a new booster seat law that requires kids under eight years old to be secured in the back seat of a vehicle on a booster seat with a shoulder belt. The purpose of a booster seat is to raise kids up to a height where the seat belt, which is designed for an adult, fits them correctly.
The state of Georgia passed the law because statistics show that children who use a booster seat are 59% less likely to be injured in the event of an accident.
When you don’t use a child-appropriate booster seat, adult seat belts may cut into necks and bellies. In minor accidents, children who are not in a booster seat often are burned or cut by shoulder belts that fit improperly. A young child in a front seat with an airbag can be seriously injured.
With a booster seat appropriately secured according to manufacturer’s directions in the back seat of a car, a child can wear a shoulder and lap belt that will align appropriately with their hip bones and shoulders. Van Sant says the booster seat law is a smart idea that he knows has helped children avoid injuries in car accidents throughout the state.
The law also comes with fines for non-compliance. If you are stopped and your child is not in an appropriate booster seat and shoulder belt, your first fine is $50. The second and subsequent fines are $100. That’s a big price to pay.
With this law comes the requirement for parents and grandparents to have appropriate booster seats available for whenever they transport their children or grandchildren.
If you or someone you know can’t afford a booster seat or other child safety seat, the State of Georgia has programs that can help you.
David Van Sant is an Atlanta personal injury lawyer who works with accident victims to ensure that their medical injuries are taken care of by the responsible party in an accident. If you need help with insurance claims or a lawsuit due to an accident that was not your fault, contact the Law Offices of David Van Sant.