Car Seat Safety

Panama City Location

(850) 257-5524

Panama City Beach Location

(850) 249-3500



The Doc Says


Car Seat Safety

August 19, 2015


Leaving the hospital and putting your newborn child in a car seat for the first time can be hard. Am I doing this right? Is the car seat secure enough? Is my child comfortable? It is normal to second-guess yourself, as you are so concerned with the safety of your child.


The Internet has been buzzing with questions that new parents have asked about car seat safety, such as what type of seat your child should be in or how long to rear face your child. We've done a little digging to get some answers to a few of the most common questions:


Question #1: How long does my child need to be rear facing?


The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends rear facing until the age of two, at the least. The age of two is currently the minimum because most of the data comparing injuries from rear facing and forward facing in car accidents are centered on that age group. However, two-year-old children still haven’t developed a strong enough spinal column for forward facing to be completely safe. The longer a child sits rear facing in the proper car seat, the safer they will be.


There are a lot of websites dedicated to providing factual information about rear facing car seats, such as or


Question #2: Is my child’s car seat secure enough in the car?


To avoid injury in a car accident, the car seat should not be able to move more than an inch to the left, right, or forward. To test the security of the seat take both hands and grasp the car seat at the base. Now try to shift the seat. If it moves more than one inch either way, it is not secure enough.


To fix it, place your knee in the seat (or arm if it is a toddler seat) and put all of your weight into it while tightening the seatbelt. Don’t forget to lock the belt once you have tightened it!


Question #3: How do I harness my child in the car seat correctly? 


When harnessing you child in, try to pinch the fabric of the harness. If you are able to fold the fabric, then the harness is too loose. The straps should be snug against your child, and properly positioned over the shoulders, to prevent to chance of your child coming out of the seat in the event of a crash.


Another common mistake is placing the chest clip on the stomach or above the shoulders instead of on the chest. It is recommended that the chest clip be armpit level in order to be effective in crash protection.


Keep in mind that it is important to remove any blankets and puffy or thick jackets or sweaters when fastening your child in the car seat! Doing so will ensure that the harness is snug against your child and will be able to do the job in the event of a crash.


For more child passenger safety laws, visit this website to see the laws for each state!


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Office Info

Panama City Office:

2933 Hwy 77 (MLK Blvd)

Panama City, FL 32405


Phone: (850) 257-5524

Fax: (850) 257-5638

Hours: 8:00 to 5:00 Mon-Fri


Panama City Beach Office:

10800 PC Beach Pkwy, Unit 400

Panama City Beach, FL 32407


Phone: (850) 249-3500

Fax: (850) 249-3530

Hours: 8:00 to 5:00 Mon-Fri


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Panama City

2933 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd
Panama City, FL 32405

(850) 257-5524

Office Hours: 8:00-5:00 Mon-Fri

Panama City Beach

10800 PCB Pkwy, Unit 400
Panama City Beach, FL 32407

(850) 249-3500

Office Hours: 8:00-5:00 Mon-Fri