A booster car seat is a type of child restraint system designed for older children who have outgrown the traditional forward-facing or convertible car seat, but are not yet tall enough to use the vehicle's seat belt alone. The purpose of a booster seat is to “boost” the child up so that the vehicle's seat belt fits them properly, providing effective restraint and protection in the event of a crash.
There are two main types of booster seats:
- High-Back Boosters: These boosters have a high backrest that provides additional support to the child's back and head. High-back boosters typically offer superior positioning of the shoulder belt compared to a backless booster, and is often more comfortable and supportive. It’s also suitable for vehicles that do not have headrests or for children who may benefit from the additional support. It’s a great first option to get your child used to riding in a booster! **Some high-back boosters turn into a backless booster when your child is ready.
- Backless Boosters: Backless boosters are simpler in design and do not have a high backrest. They raise the child's seating position to ensure proper seat belt fit. Backless boosters are often more compact and suitable for older children who no longer need the extra head and back support.
The primary purpose of a booster seat is to position the vehicle's seat belt across the strongest parts of a child's body—the collarbone and hips—rather than across the neck or abdomen. Booster seats help ensure that the seat belt fits snugly and comfortably, reducing the risk of injury in a crash.
When is my child ready for a booster? Read here for more information!
Remember when your child is in a harnessed seat, it’s your job to keep them safe, but when they are in a booster seat, it’s their responsibility to keep themselves safe! Moving to a booster seat is not a milestone you should rush. If your child still fits in a harnessed seat, use it.
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