AB 53 will save lives. It’s as simple as that.
Yesterday kids in California got a little bit safer thanks to Governor Brown signing AB 53. So what is AB 53? Here's the rundown:
Motor vehicle collisions are still the number 1 unintentional killer of children from 1-14 years old. AB 53 will make it mandatory for children under 2 years of age to ride rear-facing in a vehicle unless they weigh 40 pounds or are 40 inches tall prior to turning 2. This is critically important because children between the ages of 1 and 2 are five times safer rear-facing versus forward-facing. Why? Studies show that children under 2 have not fully developed their neck muscles and ligaments have yet to harden. This makes them an increased risk for neck and spine injuries if riding forward-facing.
In a car collision, when a child is rear-facing, the child’s car seat takes the brunt of the crash force, rather than the child’s neck and spine. Many parents of toddlers riding rear-facing worry about their child’s legs being broken in a car crash. This is because in order to fit in their car seat, toddlers’ legs must often be crisscrossed and it can appear that the child does not have enough legroom. It is an unfounded worry, however, that children riding rear-facing suffer limb fractures. It’s actually children riding forward-facing that incur limb fractures at a higher rate in a collision.
Car seat manufactures are already ahead of this legislation and have been manufacturing rear-facing car seats that allow for higher weight and height limits since the American Academy of Pediatrics recommended in April 2011 for children to ride rear-facing until 2 years old or until they reach the maximum height & weight limit of their car seat. This law does not go into effect until 2017, but now is a good time to start practicing the best and safest way for your littles to ride. As we’ve always done at beep! beep! car seat we encourage parents to keep their children rear-facing as long as possible. For Ben, one of the owners here at beep! beep! car seat, his youngest munchkin still rides rear-facing at 2 and a half years old and he has no plans to turn her forward-facing anytime soon. That kinda says it all about our car seat philosophy.
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