Promenade Park Building
3915 Cascade Road
Atlanta, Georgia 30331
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- Monday - Thursday: 9:00am - 5:00pm
- Friday: 9:00am - 4:00pm
- Saturdays: 7:30am - 10:30am
To preserve and promote the health of our patients while fostering life-long partnerships with families and the community.
We proudly serve the Southwest Atlanta community as well as College Park, East Point, Riverdale, Union City, Austell, Mableton, Lithia Springs and Douglasville.
Summary of 2011 AAP Policy on Child Passenger Safety
When the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) released its 2011 Policy Statement on Child Passenger Safety, I was excited to share this information with the families at Atlanta Pediatric Partners, PC. Much to my surprise, parents were not very receptive to the new safety guidelines. I must have heard every excuse out there. "I just turned her around", "My child will not like it", "My child is too long", "My child can not watch television", "We are just trying to be too safe these days", and the list goes on.
As a parent, I certainly understand the convenience of having an infant facing forward or a tween in the front seat, but as a physician let me remind you that this is about safety. According to the National Highway Safety Transportation Administration, motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death for children ages 3 to 14. This new policy is a much needed update from the previous version which was released in 2002. It is also a time for parents to renew their efforts to provide a safe environment for children. With that said, please allow me to provide you with a summary of the 2011 AAP Policy on Child Passenger Safety:
REAR-FACING UNTIL AGE TWO.
Keep your infant rear-facing until the age of two, and do not allow them to ride in an infant carrier seat when what they really need, based on their weight or height, is a convertible car seat.
AFTER THE AGE OF TWO, FORWARD FACING IN A FIVE POINT HARNESS AS LONG AS POSSIBLE.
Where safety is concerned, the more a child is restrained in a vehicle, the better. Many manufacturers are now designing car seats that can be used up to 65-80 pounds and booster seats that have a five-point harness.
BOOSTER SEAT UNTIL AGE 8-IT'S THE LAW
Not only is a booster seat until age 8 recommended by the AAP, a new Georgia law which
became effective on July 1, 2011, states that all children under the age of 8 years old must be
restrained in an approved car seat or booster seat. The Georgia law provides exceptions if
your child is taller than 4 feet nine inches, and in some other instances. Click here to learn
MOVE OUT OF THE BOOSTER SEAT BETWEEN AGE 8 AND 12 AND WHEN THE SEAT BELT FITS PROPERLY.
Children are only required to wear a booster until age 8, but the purpose of the booster is to ensure that the seatbelt fits properly. A proper fit means that the lap portion of the belt fits across the hips and pelvis (or across the upper thighs) and the shoulder portion fits across the middle of the shoulder and chest when the child is sitting upright with the back against the seat. If your child is too small, let them stay in the booster seat.
BACKSEAT RIDERS UNTIL THE AGE OF THIRTEEN.
Older children should use lap and shoulder seat belts for optimal protection and remain in the backseat until age thirteen.
Ensuring the safety of your children is one of the most important parental responsibilities and must not be taken lightly. If you are uncertain whether your child is restrained properly, please visit www.nhtsa.gov to find a child safety seat inspection station in your area. If you have any questions about the AAP 2011 Policy Statement on Child Passenger Safety please discuss them with your physician on your next office visit.
Click here to read the full AAP policy.