Preteens in front car seat? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 19 Old 08-29-2008, 09:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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At what age or weight/height can teens or preteens ride in the front seat of a car? Does it matter if the car has a passenger side air bag?

We are having to get a new (to us) car, and I'm just trying to consider everything. One car was in many other ways very nice, but the back seat had very little leg room. But then, usually there would only be two of us in that car (me and DD), and DD is going to be a teen soon, so maybe the tiny back seat wouldn't be a problem?

Thanks!

I think I'll cross-post in Family Safety (if I can find it - it's moved around).

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#2 of 19 Old 08-29-2008, 09:56 PM
 
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I don't know the weight minimum but the minimum age rec for front seat is age 12.

Still a sleepy mama to my fabulous 2 year old girl
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#3 of 19 Old 08-29-2008, 11:32 PM
 
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In general, I will not allow DSD to ride in the front seat until she is over 12yo. However, there is a time when we have to break the rule. I pick her up after school in the car riders line. She has to get in the car quickly, and our current car situation makes it difficult for her to get in the back easily. I have too many car seats for her to climb over. kwim Anyway, she gets in the front for this one moment. We do have air bags that disable for anyone riding in the the passenger seat that is under 100lbs. It is not something I rely on, though. kwim

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#4 of 19 Old 08-29-2008, 11:34 PM
 
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You can look up the specific laws pertaining to your state on the DMV web site.

I can tell you, driving your 5 yo around in the front seat is neither recommended nor legal (SIL, I'm looking at you... grrrr...
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#5 of 19 Old 08-29-2008, 11:37 PM
 
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It may vary from state to state. My husband is a law enforcement officer. Their department recommends children in the front seat be over 12yo and at least 80 pounds. The height requirements, for them, is about 4 foot tall. Their main concerns are the impacts of airbags. HTH
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#6 of 19 Old 08-30-2008, 01:03 AM
 
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As of July 1, 2008, it is now a law in WA state (where I live) that nobody under the age of 13 can ride in the front seat of a vehicle.

I suppose it varies from state to state.

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#7 of 19 Old 08-30-2008, 04:55 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by _betsy_ View Post
You can look up the specific laws pertaining to your state on the DMV web site.

I can tell you, driving your 5 yo around in the front seat is neither recommended nor legal (SIL, I'm looking at you... grrrr...
It wouldn't be illegal in Oregon if the child was in a booster seat.

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Originally Posted by SAHDS View Post
As of July 1, 2008, it is now a law in WA state (where I live) that nobody under the age of 13 can ride in the front seat of a vehicle.

I suppose it varies from state to state.
I thought it was 12. DD gets annoyed every time we go to WA. I pull over and make her move. At nearly 10 she is big for her age and meets the height and weight requirements.
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#8 of 19 Old 08-30-2008, 04:57 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SAHDS View Post
As of July 1, 2008, it is now a law in WA state (where I live) that nobody under the age of 13 can ride in the front seat of a vehicle.

I suppose it varies from state to state.
BTW.. I thought it was June 1, 2007. It was the cell phone law that went into effect this July. (DH worked in Vancouver until a month ago.)
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#9 of 19 Old 08-30-2008, 05:46 AM
 
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Originally Posted by aniT
I thought it was 12. DD gets annoyed every time we go to WA. I pull over and make her move. At nearly 10 she is big for her age and meets the height and weight requirements.
No, it's under 13 (0-12 yrs.)


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Originally Posted by aniT
BTW.. I thought it was June 1, 2007. It was the cell phone law that went into effect this July. (DH worked in Vancouver until a month ago.)
Methinks I should drink some coffee before I start throwing out any more laws/facts/dates. Don't tell DH (:cop!

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#10 of 19 Old 08-30-2008, 03:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, everyone.

DD will be turning 13 soon, weighs just under 100 lbs, and is nearly as tall as me. So, I think a two door with a tiny back seat will do for us, IF that's the car we buy.

Thanks again.

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#11 of 19 Old 08-30-2008, 04:06 PM
 
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Originally Posted by aniT View Post
It wouldn't be illegal in Oregon if the child was in a booster seat.

It's illegal in NYS where we live, and the child is not in a booster.
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#12 of 19 Old 08-30-2008, 06:10 PM
 
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Originally Posted by _betsy_ View Post
It's illegal in NYS where we live, and the child is not in a booster.
I found this information on safeny.com.

What is the child passenger safety law in New York State?

The law requires children under the age of four to be restrained in a federally approved car seat when riding in a motor vehicle [Section 1229-c(1), NYS Vehicle & Traffic Law].
If the weight of a child under the age of 4 exceeds 40 pounds, the child may be restrained in an appropriate child restraint system, allowing the child to use a booster seat. Children ages 4, 5,and 6 must be properly secured in an appropriate child restraint system, one for which your child meets the weight and height recommendations of the child restraint manufacturer. [Section 1229-c(1), NYS Vehicle & Traffic Law] A child safety seat or harness/vest or booster seat may be used.
The vehicle's safety belts are not defined as a child restraint system under this law, as safety belts are not designed for children under 4'9" and therefore, do not protect young children.
Are children required by law to sit in the back seat?

Although New York does not have a law preventing children from sitting in the front seat, it is highly recommended that all children age 12 and under ride properly restrained in the back seat. Researchers estimate that just by putting a child in the back seat instead of the front seat reduces the chance of injury and death by more than 30%.

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#13 of 19 Old 08-31-2008, 04:11 AM
 
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In oregon there is no law against a child in the front seat. The booster seat age is 8yo, 60lbs. and 4'9".

My son is 12 now and is 5'4" and weighs 10 lbs more than I did until I was married at 21! There is no reason for him to not sit in the front. And he has for the past couple of years.

NOW, the catch is, the weight for airbag safty is 100 lbs. I was scared to death when I got my first car with an airbag. I was 103 lbs at the time. wth. My mom worked in a factory making airbags when I was younger. I would not want me or any of my loved ones hit by an airbag.

I quickly figured out how to disable all airbags and have done so with each vehicle I have driven since, so I guess I never worried about that part of it.

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#14 of 19 Old 08-31-2008, 04:17 AM
 
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Originally Posted by mamato3cherubs View Post
In oregon there is no law against a child in the front seat. The booster seat age is 8yo, 60lbs. and 4'9".
I don't believe the law is 4'9". I believe that is a recommendation.

Apparenlty it is only 4'9" if the child is under age 8.

Quote:
Effective July 1, 2007, a new Oregon law further requires that children use a booster seat until they are 4'9" tall, unless they are at least 8 years old. Oregon strongly recommends that children under age 12 ride in the back seat. All Oregon passengers and drivers are required to wear a seat belt.
So if they are 8 years old it doesn't matter if they are 4'9" or 4'5". This was a big deal when the law went into effect as my daughter had been out of a booster since she was 6 (as was the law at the time) and was 8 when the law went into effect.
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#15 of 19 Old 09-01-2008, 11:16 AM
 
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it depends on the state. the RECOMMENDATION for everyone is the 4'9" and 80lbs you see on commercials. just because its recommended doesnt mean its the law.
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#16 of 19 Old 09-01-2008, 01:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by onelilguysmommy View Post
it depends on the state. the RECOMMENDATION for everyone is the 4'9" and 80lbs you see on commercials. just because its recommended doesnt mean its the law.
I have never seen a commercial with any recommendation.
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#17 of 19 Old 09-01-2008, 10:14 PM
 
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My 10 yr. old is nearly as tall as me (I'm 5'4"), and weighs at least 80 lbs. He rides in the front seat occasionally. I don't mind it, as I think he's perfectly safe. I wouldn't (and didn't) allow it a year ago, but he has grown a lot in the last 9 months.

I think it depends more on the size of the child than their age.
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#18 of 19 Old 09-02-2008, 03:17 AM
 
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aniT, thank you for the clarification.

And yes I have seen commercials stating that recomendation as well

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#19 of 19 Old 09-02-2008, 12:04 PM
 
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My daughter turns 12 today and is almost 90 pounds and 5' tall. She has been riding in the front with me for a few months now.
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