Stephanie Tombrello: Hello, I am Stephanie Tombrello Executive Director of SafetyBeltSafe, USA. We have been talking about how to keep your older child safe in the car. Now we are going to talk about how to correctly use a Booster seat with your older child. Boosters can reduce injuries to children who need them by almost 70%. Make sure that when your child is sitting in a booster that the child is sitting upright and is not slouching or trying to lean over to other part of the car. If you have a vehicle that has shoulder lap belts in the back make sure you have a seat back that is high enough to support your child's head once the child is sitting on a Booster seat. If not be sure to select a Booster seat with a back. Remember that the reason that you need to use a head support with a booster or have the seat up behind the child's head is to avoid a whiplash injury particularly in case of a rear impact. If your vehicle is one of those that already has a shoulder lap belt in the center of the back seat try that place first .
Remember that your Booster child has less protection than your rear facing child or your forward facing child is using a harness and a top-tether strap. Look at the Boosters that you might consider and think about your lifestyle and your child's protection. The advantage of a Booster with an adjustable back is that it can grow with the youngster. Some children start in boosters as young as three or four years of age. But we have found that using the five step test many, many children need to be in a Booster till at least 8 to 10 years of age. There are additional reasons for that, not just that they make them short but also because the lap belt may fit in the wrong place on the child's body and the lower bone structure is not fully formed until age ten and there is more likelihood of injury of internal organs by the lap belt. Now that's how to use a Booster seat for older children in the car .
Next we are going to talk about how to know when your child is ready to use a safety belt alone.