Did you know that Minnesota saw a 6% increase in traffic fatalities in 2018, and of the 381 people who died in traffic-related accidents that year, 96 were not wearing seat belts?
And there’s a connecton between a driver wearing a seat belt and child restraint use. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, when a driver uses seat belt they tend to use child restraint 90% of the time and the child restraint usage falls to 25% when the drivers themselves don’t use a child restraint.
So make sure to buckle up – yourself and your child!
Minnesota Car Seat Law
According to Minnesota law:
“Every motor vehicle operator, when transporting a child who is both under the age of eight and shorter than four feet nine inches on the streets and highways of this state in a motor vehicle equipped with factory-installed seat belts, shall equip and install for use in the motor vehicle, according to the manufacturer's instructions, a child passenger restraint system meeting federal motor vehicle safety standards.”
There is a fine of $50 for violating this law.
Minnesota Rear-facing Car Seat Law
According to Minnesota law, all children must be in a child restraint until they are 4’9” tall, or at least age 8, whichever comes first.
Minnesota Department of Public Safety says that newborn children up to 2 years of age should travel in the rear-facing car seat. It’s best to keep your child in the back seat for as long as possible.
Minnesota forward-facing Car Seat Law
Minnesota law doesn't specifically mention the forward-facing car seat. According to the Office of Traffic Safety, children can travel in the forward-facing car seat after they have outgrown their rear-facing car seats. A rear-facing seat is the safest place for toddlers. A forward-facing car seat can usually be used until the child is 4 years old, however, refer to car seat manufacturer's weight and height limit to see if you should keep using the forward-facing seat.
Minnesota Booster Car Seat Law
After outgrowing the forward-facing seat, use the booster seat until the child is 4’9” tall or 8 years old.
When Can My Child Sit in the Front Seat in Minnesota?
Minnesota doesn’t have any law for seating in the front seat. However, the Office of the Traffic Safety recommends that your child sits in the back seat until they are 13.
Leaving Child in Car Law in Minnesota
Minnesota has currently no laws regarding leaving children in a car.
Is it Illegal to Smoke in a Car with a Child in Minnesota?
In Minnesota, it is not illegal to smoke in a private vehicle.
Taxi Car Seat Law in Minnesota
Taxis are exempt from following Minnesota Child Restraint laws.
Minnesota Law Car Seat - Replacement After Accident
Minnesota Department of Public Safety says that you should never use a seat if it has been in an accident. The seat should be destroyed regardless of the condition. (Source)
Places to Get Car Seat Help in Minnesota
Good Car Seat Videos for Minnesotan Parents
How to secure your car seat by Safe Kids Worldwide
Is it time to move from a booster to a seat belt?
Child Passenger Safety - 5 Step Test
The Inch Test
Counterfeit Car Seats
Car seat check: An easy guide
Resources for More Info on Car Seat Safety in Minnesota
With two kids of my own, I’m passionate about child safety! I’m a research nerd who’s on a mission to make the world a safer place for kids – starting with car seats!
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