Law Requires Booster Seats for Kids
COLUMBUS - A new state law will require more children to be seated in boosters when traveling in motor vehicles. Amended Substitute House Bill 320 will take effect in six months. Additionally, lawmakers included another six-month period in the bill, during which violators will be issued warnings by law enforcement rather than tickets or citations.
Under current law, children younger than 4 or weighing less than 40 pounds are required to be secured in a federally approved child restraint system (car seats), according to an analysis by the state's Legislative Service Commission. Violators are subject to misdemeanor charges and at least $25 in fines.
Under the new law, children who are younger than 8 and less than 4 feet, 9 inches in height must be secured in booster seats. According to the analysis, "For example, a child who is 7 years old and over 4 feet 9 inches in height would not specifically be required to be in a booster seat, but would continue to be required by current law to be in a child restraint system or occupant restraining system. A child who is 7 years old and less than 4 feet 9 inches in height specifically would be required to be in a booster seat.
Offenders will be subject to fines of $25 to $75, although the offense will be considered secondary (meaning parents or guardians cannot be pulled over by law enforcement for that offense alone)