Can Kids Sit in the Front Seat of the Car in New York City?

Children Safety has always been a top priority in New York City and across the United States. As accidents can happen at any time we must take all possible precautions to keep our children safe on New York city roads. Despite these efforts, children still get injured in accidents on the road quite frequently. When this happens, it’s important to get prompt medical attention at an emergency room and legal advice from an experienced Queens child injury attorney.

At Wittenstein & Wittenstein we’ve seen what traffic accidents can do to children and we’re keenly aware of what can be done to help prevent them. One of the most important steps is to use vehicle restraints that are appropriate for the age of the child and are properly installed. New York State Department of Motor Vehicles has clearly outlined guidelines for kids and children riding in cars. The New York State law requires that:

  • All children under the age of 2 must ride in a rear-facing car seat
  • All children under the age of 4 ride in child safety seats
  • All children ride in child restraint systems until their 8th birthday

It further states that child restraint systems and safety seats must be certified according to Federal Motor Vehicles Safety Standard 213.The New York Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee website has a list of permanent child safety seat fitting stations in NY State. It is always advisable to install child safety seats from at an authorised fitting station rather than trying to do it yourself. There is an exception for taxis, but common sense dictates that it’s safer to use the proper seat in those vehicles as well.

Can Child Safety Seat in Car with Airbags be Used?

As per New York State law for child passengers, it is not illegal for passengers under age 13 to ride in the front seat of a vehicle which has airbags, but it is considered dangerous and should be avoided. As per recent studies, airbags can cause serious or fatal injuries to children and infants that sit in the front seat. It is safer for children and to ride in the back seat of any vehicle.

For the best child passenger protection in your vehicle:

  • Never put a child safety seat that faces the rear of the vehicle in the front seat of a vehicle if the vehicle has a passenger-side air bag.
  • Do not put small children in the front seat of a vehicle that has an airbag. Put a child that does not use a safety seat and who is less than 5 feet in height in the back seat.
  • If a child must ride in the front seat, make sure the car seat is installed as far back as possible. Fasten the child securely in the child safety seat or lap and shoulder belts. An air bag that opens suddenly can cause a serious injury to your infant or young child.
  • Air bags, used with seat belts, provide the best protection for older children and adults during an accident.
  • Remember that the back seat is the safest location for children to ride. Read more tips on the correct use of safety seats and child restraint systems.

Visit the New York Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee website for more information on occupant protection. Feel free to contact Wittenstein & Wittenstein experienced Queens and Brooklyn car accident attorneys and child injury attorneys. We offer free consultation and case review. Call 718-261-8114 for an appointment.




2023-11-08T07:45:16+00:00By |0 Comments

About the Author:

Alyce Wittenstein is a world class attorney, blogger and filmmaker. She began working at the firm in 1985 as a managing paralegal, learning all the practices and procedures of the firm from Mr. Wittenstein and the staff. From 1995-1998, she attended CUNY Law School where she made a mark as a teaching assistant for Civil Rights leader Haywood Burns. She founded a Human Rights Delegation to Haiti and studied Constitutional Law with Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Working at the Equal Opportunity Employment Commision (EEOC), she learned a great deal about Employment Discrimination matters. She brought her knowledge of the Personal Injury practice and her passion for Civil Rights to the firm when she was admitted to the Bar in 1999. In 2000, she became a partner and the firm name was changed to Wittenstein & Wittenstein, Esqs. PC.