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How can you protect your toddler from a seatback failure?

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Posted on November 22, 2022

For decades, safety professionals have advised parents to place toddlers into car seats that are appropriate for their height and weight. This continues to be sound advice. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, car seats save the lives of about 325 children under the age of 5 every single year.

You probably also know you should not put your toddler’s car seat in the front of your vehicle, as airbags can be dangerous for young kids. Still, the backseat of your car also presents some risk to small passengers.

Seatback failures

In rear-end collisions and other types of accidents, the components that hold front seats in place can break. If that happens, front seatbacks might fall backward and onto anyone who is sitting behind them. If your child’s car seat is in the second row of seats, your son or daughter might suffer potentially life-threatening crush injuries.

Toddler safety

The real threat to young passengers comes from the combined weight of adult passengers and front seatbacks. Therefore, to keep your toddler safe, you should put his or her car seat behind a vacant front-row seat. This is likely to diminish his or her odds of suffering a catastrophic injury if a front seatback fails.

When your car is full of riders, though, you may have little choice but to place your toddler’s car seat behind an occupied seat. Nevertheless, driving responsibly and defensively can reduce your chances of having a car accident that injures your son or daughter.

Ultimately, if your child suffers an injury despite your efforts to keep him or her safe, you may have grounds to seek significant financial compensation.