A new Florida law that goes into effect on July 1, 2014 requires a child car seat for children through age 3, and a car seat or booster seat for children ages 4 and 5. That means parents will no longer be allowed to use just seat belts for children under 5. However, there are exceptions to the law, such as when a child is being transported by someone who is not a member of the immediate family.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, use of a car seat reduces the risk of death for infants younger than age 1 by 71%, and for toddlers ages 1 to 4 by 54%, in passenger vehicles. Booster seats reduce the risk for serious injury by 45% for children ages 4 to 8 when compared with seat belt use alone.