What age is too old for a child to ride in a car seat?

By Melanie Ruberti - bio | email

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - What age is too old for a child to ride in a car seat? If Georgia legislature has its way, children as old as eight will have to stay in their seats unless they meet certain requirements.

WTOC went to Savannah Chrisitian Prepatory School to ask eight year olds what they think about car and booster seats. They all pretty much had the same answer.

"I don't really like it because it's very uncomfortable and I just gave it up for my little brother," said Anabel Dillingham.

"I just kind of feel like they're for babies," added Clay Proper.

"I just don't want anybody to laugh at me and tease me," confessed Charles Moore.

Most of the students just got out of their booster seats two years ago, but if the Georgia Senate passes a new proposal, children would have to stay in the seats until they are eight.

"I think we should because it would be safer and kids wouldn't get hurt as bad," said eight-year-old Madison Best who still rides in a booster seat in her parents' car.

"She's small, she's petite, and doesn't weigh a whole lot. So we feel like, for safety reasons, that we have her in the booster," said Madison's mom, Jenny Best.

This is exactly what legislator's think too. The only exemptions to the proposal are children who are taller than 4'9" or weigh more than 40 pounds.

"I would think that there was research and testing behind the suggestion. and if the rule is being made, it's probably because research shows children are being hurt in car wrecks. And if we're going to err, let's err on the side of caution. and keep our children safe," said parent Suzette Sprinkle.

Right now, Georgia law states a child must remain in a booster seat until age six. Allison Gramza with Safe Kids Savannah says that is too young.

"A six year old just isn't tall enough, or big enough to sit in a seat belt yet. And a lot of parents hear that state law, and they think 'oh! I can take them out.' Well, if you figure in the law of gravity, as we like to say, their just not ready to sit in that seat belt just yet," said Gramza.

As much as the students don't like to admit it, they know the new proposal is for their own good.

"It's kind of safe because if you get in a wreck, you won't go flying out the window. and If you don't have it on, you will ," said Logan Jones.

"Then my mom is going to make me get a new booster seat, and I'm just going to be really mad," Anabel told WTOC.

"I wouldn't really like it, but I guess I would just deal with it and do it," said Clay.

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