The Florida Police Chiefs Association and the Air Bag Safety Campaign are pleased to provide you with the following safe driving information which will have a lifesaving impact on you and your children.
Air bags and safety belts save lives. Everyone, especially parents and care givers, need to understand how to minimize the risk of their children. It is recommended that children 12 and under be in the center position of the rear seat. This is the safest place.
All drivers SHOULD be properly belted and sit as far away from the air bag as possible to allow the air bag to deploy. Drivers should move the driver's seat rearward to allow space between the driver's chest and the steering wheel, and the seat back should be tilted slightly. To the extent possible, the driver should hold the steering wheel from the side so that his or her arms aren't between the driver and the air bag. This arm positioning will allow the bag to depoly.
There are a third fewer fatalities to children who ride in the back seat - whether the vehicle has an air bag or not. The best way to protect children from the risks that air bags may pose, as well as from other crash related injuries, is to properly restrain children ages 12 and under in the back seat.
Air Bag Safety Points
Infants should NEVER ride in the front seat of a vehicle with a passenger air bag.
Children ages 12 and under should always be properly restrained in a child safety seat or safety belt and ride in the back seat. Even if there isn't a passenger air bag in the motor vehicle, the safest place for infants and children is properly secured and buckled up in the back seat.
Safety belts, both lap and shoulder, should be used with air bags. Safety belt use, currently at 69.5% in Florida needs to increase.
Young children and infants should always ride in age- and size-appropriate child safety seats. The safety seat should be held properly in place by the vehicle's safety belts and the child should be correctly buckled in the child safety seat. A child who has outgrown a convertible child safety seat will need to ride in a booster seat for the vehicle's safety belts to fit properly.
Driver and front passenger seats should be moved as far back as possible, particularly for shorter people.