As more and more states require car seats and boosters for older and larger children, the number of booster seats on the market has risen. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recently tested 41 booster seats and found 13 of them problematic when it came to correctly positioning the safety belt on the child. Given that the seat belt is what is keeping the child safe and that incorrect positioning can lead to severe injuries, the results of this report should be taken seriously.
“We evaluated the safety belt fit boosters provide, not crash protection,” says Institute president Adrian Lund in the press release. “This is because unlike child restraints, boosters don’t restrain children in crashes. They simply position children so lap and shoulder belts are in the right place to restrain them.”
“We’d expect the 10 best bets to improve belt fit for children in almost any car, minivan, or SUV,” Lund says. “Likewise, it’s clear that kids in the 13 boosters we don’t recommend aren’t getting the full benefit of improved lap belt fit. These boosters may increase restraint use by making children more comfortable, but they don’t position belts for optimal protection.”
For a list of the “not recommended”, “best bet” and “good bet” seats, click here.