The process of designing a motor vehicle is incredibly complex and involves entire teams of engineers. They have to test every system carefully, especially the systems that are safety-critical, including the brakes and the seat belts or safety restraints.
Modern design has certainly helped make the average vehicle safer for adult male occupants in the event of a crash. Unfortunately, other people aren’t always as fortunate as adult men when collisions occur.
The way that automotive manufacturers and federal regulatory agencies test the safety features of vehicles focuses on the adult male body, which is exactly why you need to have grade-school children in a booster seat even though they likely don’t want to use one.
How a booster seat helps
The restraints in the rear seating area of a four-wheeled vehicle are too tall to properly protect children. They fall across the chest and shoulder of an adult, which means they will not fall at the same spot on smaller people.
Having your child ride in a booster seat can save their life in the event of a crash. The extra height that the booster seat provides allows the restraints to properly secure the child in the seat. It reduces their likelihood of getting thrown from the vehicle during the crash or suffering injuries caused by the restraints intended to save their life.
Both federal agencies and professional organizations for pediatricians recommend the consistent use of booster seats until a child is at least 4’9″ tall. It is quite common for children as old as 12 to still need to use a booster seat for safety in a vehicle. Parents should base when they transition their child out of that seat on their overall size and not on how embarrassing they find the booster seat to be.
Proper restraints make all the difference
As a parent, you love your children and want them to have the best opportunities in life. Unfortunately, your children don’t always know what is best for them. They may plead or aggressively fight against you when you tell them to strap into a booster seat. Rather than succumbing to that pressure, you need to do what parents do best and make their long-term well-being your priority instead of their short-term personal wishes.
Using the right safety restraints will increase your children’s overall safety if your family ever experiences a motor vehicle collision.