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Every journey on the road should begin with a commitment to protecting our most precious cargo: our children. In this age of transportation, where vehicles are an integral part of our lives, it's essential to grasp the fundamental principles of child passenger safety to safeguard our children and provide them with a secure and comfortable ride.
Ohio has specific car seat laws in place to ensure the safety of child passengers. Here are the key points regarding Ohio's car seat laws:
Children are required to ride in rear-facing car seats until they are at least two years old or until they reach the maximum weight or height limit allowed by the car seat manufacturer. It is recommended to keep children rear-facing for as long as possible as it is the safest position.
After reaching two years old and outgrowing the rear-facing seat’s height or weight limits, children should be placed in a forward-facing car seat with a harness. Continue using this type of seat until the child outgrows it according to the manufacturer’s specifications.
Once a child has outgrown the forward-facing seat, they should transition to a booster seat. Ohio law mandates that children use a booster seat until they are 8 years old or 4 feet 9 inches tall. The goal is to ensure that the vehicle’s seatbelt fits properly across the child’s body.
Children who have outgrown their booster seats must use a properly fitting seatbelt. It’s crucial that the seatbelt lies across the chest and shoulder, not the neck or face, and that it crosses the hips and thighs, not the abdomen.
Ohio law requires that all children under the age of 13 should be seated in the back seat of the vehicle, when possible, to minimize the risk of injury from airbags.
Failure to comply with Ohio’s car seat laws can result in fines and penalties. Law enforcement officers can issue citations for violations.
Check out Jeff Heller’s interview with Fox 8 News about child passenger safety.
Please note that car seat laws change over time, and it’s essential to check with the Ohio Department of Public Safety or your local law enforcement agency for the most up-to-date information and any changes to the regulations. Additionally, car seat safety guidelines are primarily aimed at maximizing the safety of child passengers, so it’s always a good practice to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for your specific car seat and prioritize your child’s safety.
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