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More BEST BET boosters make it easier to shop with confidence – IIHS News

More BEST BET boosters make it easier to shop with confidence – IIHS News


>>Jessica Jermakian: Booster seats are doing a much
better job of consistently providing good safety belt fit in most vehicles. We just
tested a crop of new boosters and 20 out of 23 earned the top rating of BEST BET and three are GOOD BETs. The main job of a booster is to
elevate a child and position the safety belts, which are designed for adults, so
that they fit a child properly. A booster should be able to provide good belt fit,
whether it’s used in Mom’s SUV or Dad’s sedan. The shoulder belt should sit snugly at
the center of the shoulder. It shouldn’t fall off the shoulder or ride up on the
neck or face. The lap belt should lie flat across the upper thighs and not
up on the soft tummy. Parents need to know that even though booster seats have
improved, many of the lower-ranked seats from previous years are still being sold.
When you’re ready to buy, take a look at our ratings and look for booster seats
that are either BEST BETs or GOOD BETs. The price of a booster doesn’t dictate
how well it works for belt fit. One of the least expensive boosters is the
Little Tikes Backless Booster. It’s a BEST BET, and you can buy it for as
little as $13. Parents shouldn’t rush to move their kids from a forward-facing
restraint to a booster seat or to the safety belt alone. It’s best to keep kids
in a harness-equipped restraint for as long as possible, up to the height or weight limit of the
seat. The child seat manufacturers take these ratings seriously, and they use our
test procedures for belt fit when they design new boosters. Among the new
posters we evaluated this year, there aren’t any we wouldn’t recommend.

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