Some of the most heartbreaking cases that our Nashville auto accident lawyers see involve children. In some situations, these youngsters’ injuries are so severe that they may lead to lifelong disabilities. Although you cannot control other motorists’ behaviors on the road, you can better your child’s odds of survival and safety during a crash by following the Tennessee child restraint law to the letter.
Infants: Rear-facing Seats
A child, who is younger than one year, must ride in a rear-facing car seat that is properly secured with the vehicle’s seat belt system. The same is true for a child who weighs less than 20 pounds. Please note that this is not an either-or rule. Both conditions, considered separately, qualify the child for the rear-facing seat.
We recommend checking the seat’s ratings and ensuring that they meet federal standards. Moreover, verify that there is no recall involving the model you are choosing. If you anticipate that your child may be heavier than 20 pounds before reaching a first birthday, invest in a seat model that is rated up to 35 pounds.
Toddlers: Forward-facing Seats
When your child is at least one year old and weighs more than 20 pounds, a forward-facing seat is appropriate. Once again, this seat must follow federal safety guidelines. We suggest buying a seat that offers a higher weight limit, which allows you to use the same seat for the next three years or so, even if the child experiences a growth spurt at any time. Some seats offer the added advantage of transitioning into booster seats for children who are at least four years old. These seats may be suitable until youngsters reach a height of 4 feet and 9 inches.
If you and your child have been involved in a car crash, contact us for answers to your questions concerning your rights. Our Nashville auto accident lawyers can help you to understand your rights, advise you on how to protect them and provide additional assistance as needed.