Is Your Kid’s Car Booster Seat a Good Fit?

Parents who are shopping for the right car booster seat for their kids have better (and safer) options to choose from than ever before, according to testing and new ratings issued by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

When it comes to car booster seat safety, finding the right fit is the name of the game. And after its most recent comprehensive study of 62 booster seat models, IIHS has named a record 31 seats as “Best Bets.” According to the group’s press release on the study, a booster seat qualifies as a “Best Bet” when it “correctly positions a vehicle safety belt on a typical 4 to 8 year-old in almost any car, minivan, or SUV.”

Since a vehicle’s seatbelts are designed for adults, a booster seat is needed to elevate the child into a position where the belt can properly restrain the child in case a car accident happens or a sudden stop is necessary. IIHS advises parents to make sure that the lap belt lies flat across a child’s upper legs, and that the shoulder belt comes down over the middle of the shoulder — not up close to the child’s neck, and not down closer to the upper arm.

Read the IIHS press release on the study, and check out the complete ratings.

The IIHS website has a lot of useful information on child passenger safety, including this Q&A.