Most parents in Tennessee and across the country understand the importance of buckling their infants, toddlers and small children into a safety seat when in the car. It is mandatory for parents in Tennessee to use car seats and booster seats to restrain their children for the first eight years of their lives. A proposed law, however, would increase this age significantly in hopes of decreasing the number of kids who are killed each year in tragic automobile accidents.

As with many proposed laws, there are both supporters and opponents of the new child safety seat law. While some people believe that the new requirements go too far, others argue that it is best to keep children in safety seats for as long as possible. If Governor Bill Haslam authorizes the proposed law, babies will be required to stay in rear-facing car seats until the age of two, forward-facing car seats until the age of five and booster seats until they reach a height of 4-foot-9 or turn 12 years old.

According to research performed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, child safety seats are 71 percent effective at reducing the car accident injury and death rate for infants under one-year of age and 54 percent of children between the ages of one and four years old.

When children are involved in a tragic accident, the results can be catastrophic, especially if they are improperly restrained. A personal injury attorney may be helpful to those who have experienced such an accident.

Source: WJHL News, “Proposed Tennessee law would increase safety seat requirements to 12-years-old,” Sydney Cameron, Mar. 8, 2016.