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Booster Basics: Child Safety Seat Changes

In just about a week, if law enforcement sees your child not in a booster seat while on the road, you could get a ticket.

The law went into effect about a year ago. Starting next Tuesday, it could cost you up to $250 if you get a citation.

Many parents said a booster seat has become standard in their vehicles. But ABC-7 wanted to know what their children think about having to sit in one.

Lais Vazquez explained that at 4 feet 4 inches, “My older daughter, she’s very tall, but I still think she’s going to be more safe inside the car with the booster seat.”

“We feel it’s important that the seat belt fits correctly. That’s what we’ve always heard and that’s what we’ve gone by,” said parent Shanan Valles.

Used to be only children under 5 years old had to sit in a child safety seat, but about a year ago, that changed. “The law they passed, I don’t know if it was necessary or not, but I guess a lot more people needed to be more alert,” to protect older children, Victor Flores, owner of the Baby Shoppe said.

“It gives a little boost for the child that still needs a little bit more of elevation so they can use the regular seat belt,” continued Flores.

Since the law changed, Flores said booster business has been booming. “Even though it wasn’t enforced,” he explained. “We’ve shown an increase in sales regarding boosters. And people asking what’s the new law, what’s it about.”

According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, if your child is under 8 years old, he or she should be in a booster seat. But if your child is younger than 8 years old and just so happens to be taller than 4 feet 9 inches, he or she by law doesn’t have to sit in the booster seat.

Isabella Valles told ABC-7 she’s 8 years old, but likes the boost. “I don’t know. It’s comfortable than just sitting on the chair,” she explained.

Valentina Vazquez and her sister Isabella say they like the view. Valentina said, “I can see out through the window.” Her sister explained, “It’s fun to ride in, and it’s safe.”

If you’re not sure if your child needs a booster seat or don’t know how to install the seat properly, there are several safety seat inspections offered by El Paso police and stores like The Baby Shoppe that can help out.

Car Seat Inspections:

El Paso Police Department (911 Raynor St.) Every Wednesday from 4:30 p.m. To 6:30 p.m.

The Baby Shoppe 3800 N. Mesa St. June 19 from 10:00 a.m. To 12:00 p.m.

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