Child Safety

Safety Belts and Child Restraints

Child Safety

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Children should always be buckled up or in a proper child restraint, and should encourage everyone to buckle up for safety. Read on to make sure you know the Florida safety belt law and important safety tips for children of all ages.

Safety Belts

  • Florida law requires the use of seat belts or child restraint devices by drivers of motor vehicles, all front seat passengers and all children riding in a vehicle under 18.
  • Florida’s safety belt law is a primary enforcement law, meaning that an officer can stop a vehicle and issue a citation simply for observing a safety belt or restraint violation.
  • Children should be in the rear seats until at least age 12, since deployed front seat air bags can be dangerous to children.

Child Restraints – Car Seats and Booster Seats

  • Florida law requires children age 5 and under to be secured properly in a crash-tested, federally approved child restraint device.
  • Children ages 0 to 3 must be in child restraint devices of a separate carrier or a vehicle manufacturer’s integrated child seat.
  • Children age 4 and 5 must be in a separate carrier, integrated child seat or booster seat.
  • The best child seat is one that fits your child, fits your car and that drivers will use correctly every time.
  • Read the car seat’s instruction manual and the portion of your vehicle’s owner manual when you install a car seat.
  • Remember to check for car seat and booster seat recalls.
  • Refer to the official Florida Driver License Handbook for more information on seat belts and child restraints.

You can visit a local FHP station to ask a certified trooper to help you inspect your seat. Click here to find the FHP station near you and call to set up an appointment.

Resources

Safety Belts and Child Restraints – Parent Printable Handout

Buckle Up – Kids Printable Activity Handout

 

FHP Car Seat Installation and Safety Check – Locations and Contact Information

Florida Statute on Child Restraint Requirements

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration – Parent Resources

How to Find the Right Car Seat