Child Passenger Safety: What You Should Know When Buying & Installing Infant Car Seats

Choosing a car seat can be a difficult decision. Although the choices may seem endless, selecting the best car seat for your family does not need to be a frustrating experience. Here are statistics and suggestions to help make your car seat decision-making and installation process a positive one.

The Problem:

Motor vehicle injuries are the leading cause of death among children in the United States.1 Child safety seats can reduce that risk by up to 71% when installed correctly.2 Over 90% of parents think their child is riding safely in their car seat, but only 1 out of 4 car seats are installed correctly. 1

The Solution:

Proper fit and installation are crucial to your child’s safety. When shopping for a car seat consider these 5 Steps:


    Choose the seat that best fits your child and your vehicle. All current car seats are required to pass government safety standards. It’s important to select a model that gives you the confidence that you’re installing it correctly. Make sure the features are easy to use and understand.


    The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends keeping your child rear-facing until age 2 or until they reach the maximum weight/height allowed by the car seat manufacturer.


    Being positioned in the center of the vehicle significantly lowers the risk of injury because it’s farthest from the point of impact. When possible, put your child in the rear center seat.


    Technology is constantly changing and manufacturers are always thinking of new ways to keep children safe. Stay up to date and read your current vehicle and car seat manuals for proper use instructions.


    •  POSITION HARNESS STRAPS PROPERLY. The harness should be at or slightly below the child’s shoulders when rear-facing. This will prevent the child from sliding upwards in the event of a crash. For older children who are forward facing, place harness at or above the child’s shoulders.
    •  PINCH TEST. Harness should be snug so you cannot pull the strap from the body and pinch the fabric together. The straps should be flat and untwisted.

1 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
2 Center for Disease Control

For more information please visit

By UPPAbaby Child Passenger Safety Team

*Courtesy of


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