Most vehicle crashes occur near home and can be violent even at lower speeds.
Among other things, Virginia laws regulate the use of child restraint devices, safety belts and the transportation of children in the back of pickup trucks. The links below provide details on some of these regulations.
Child passenger safety tips
For assistance and to locate a certified child passenger safety technician in your community visit the Safe Kids website and search ‘Find a Technician/Instructor.’
Tips for "best practices" when driving with children as passengers:
- Children should be in rear-facing infant seats from birth to one year and until they are more than 20 pounds
- Children one to four years and 20 to 40 pounds should ride in a forward-facing child seat
- Children who have outgrown a child safety seat, typically when they are over 40 pounds or five years of age, should transition to a booster seat which assists in the proper fit of a safety belt.
- All children must be in a federally approved child passenger restraint that is properly fastened and secured until they are eight years old or over 57 inches tall
- Children 12 and younger should never sit in the front seat. The safest seating position is in the back seat, away from air bags if possible.
- Children 13 years of age or older should ride in the front seat, but should position their seat as fa back as possible from the air bag.
- Always wear your lap and shoulder belt when driving - it protects you in case of a crash and it sets a good example for children.
Massachusetts Child Motor Vehicle Safety Seat Laws
The Massachusetts Child Passenger Safety Law requires children who ride as passengers in motor vehicles to be in a federally approved child passenger restraint that is properly fastened and secured until they are eight years old or over 57 inches tall.
The expanded law will require a booster seat / safety belt combination for children who have outgrown a child safety seat - typically when they are above age five or 40 pounds - until they are eight years old or over 57 inches tall.
The Massachusetts Safety Belt Law requires safety belt use by those 13 years of age and older.