When do you need to put your kid in a car seat?
When can your child graduate from a car seat to a seatbelt?
What type of car seat should you use?
As a parent, you probably have all these questions running in your head.
Thankfully, the State of Kansas implements car seat laws that you can follow.
And, here, we’re going to tell you all you should know about the Kansas car seat laws. This way, you can comply with the law AND keep your child safe.
And while we’re at it, we’re going to talk about the Kansas seatbelt laws, too, for all the adults.
So without further ado, let’s get started!
Car Seat Laws in Kansas
In Kansas, children below 9 years old are required to use a safety restraint seat. To be more specific, the law states that:
- Children below 1-year-old OR have a weight less than 20 pounds are required to be placed in a rear-facing car seat at the back.
- Children ages 1-3 OR have a weight of at least 20 pounds are required to be placed in a forward-facing car seat at the back.
- Children ages 4-8 OR are below 4’9 are required to use booster seats at the back.
Now, if your child turns 8 and is already taller than 4’9, they are allowed to wear a seatbelt. However, they should still sit in the back.
Also, it’s best to make sure that your child is comfortable in a seatbelt. If not, then there is no problem using a booster seat for a little while longer.
NOTE: It’s highly recommended that you keep your child on a rear-facing seat for as long as the manufacturer’s age and weight requirements are met.
NOTE II: We recommend checking the manufacturer’s guidelines on the maximum age and height to make sure that you’re using the right car seat.
Car Seat Exemptions in Kansas
Despite the safety that car and booster seats give, there are instances when these aren’t required for children below 8 years old.
For example, if your child is riding a school bus, the school bus doesn’t have to have car seats.
Moreover, if the child has an illness or a physical ailment that doesn’t allow them to be in a car or booster seat, then they don’t have to use one. To avoid being penalized for not complying with the law, bring a medical certificate explaining why your child can’t be in a car seat.
Car Seat Penalties in Kansas
If you violate the car seat laws in Kansas, you will be fined $60, plus court fees. Not only that, but you’ll also warrant a misdemeanor.
All that said, the worst penalty is if something happens to your child all because they weren’t in a car seat.
So even if you think the penalties are not too cruel, you won’t want anything happening to your child by disobeying this law.
How to Install a Car Seat
A car seat is effective only when it’s installed properly.
So here are some useful tips to install a car seat:
- Look for the tightest spot where you can place your seat. This can be in the middle of the back seat or at the side. It can also be right behind the driver’s seat or passenger seat.
- Use either the lower anchors or a seatbelt to put the car seat in position. Do not use both.
- If you’re using the lower anchors, attach them to the base of the car seat. Make sure they are firmly attached.
- If you’re using a seatbelt, lace the seatbelt through the car seat’s belt path. Remove any twists on the seat belt.
- Check if the car seat moves side-to-side. If it does, it’s not secure enough. Tighten the seatbelt or the lower anchors and make sure everything is attached.
Seatbelt Laws in Kansas
What about seatbelts?
Who is required to wear it?
In Kansas, you are required to wear a seatbelt if:
- You’re the driver
- You’re seated in the front seat
- You’re 9-17 years old regardless of whether you’re seated in the front or at the back
So if you’re 18+ and you’re seated at the back, you are not required to wear a seatbelt. But again, for your safety, it is best to wear one.
Seatbelt Exemptions in Kansas
People who are exempted to wear a seatbelt in a moving vehicle are:
- Newspaper deliverers who are on duty
- Mail or parcel delivery personnel who are on duty
- Those who have medical conditions that prevent them from wearing a seatbelt (must have a medical certificate present)
Seatbelt Penalties in Kansas
In Kansas, seatbelt laws have primary enforcement, meaning, if a police officer sees that you’re not wearing a seatbelt when you are required to, you may be stopped.
If so, the penalty will be $30 for adults and $60 for minors.
How to Wear a Seatbelt Properly
Just like car seats, wearing a seatbelt properly is the only way to be fully protected.
So to know if you’re wearing a seatbelt right, here’s what you need to check:
- The shoulder strap should be right in front of your chest and shoulders. It should not be placed under your arms or put over the headrest.
- The lap strap should be on top of your lower belly or top of your pelvic area.
- The seatbelt should be locked. Make sure that you hear the locking sound when you fasten it.
- The seatbelt should feel snug. It won’t protect you much if it’s too loose.
And that was your complete guide to the Kansas car seat and seatbelt laws.
So remember, make sure that you put your children who are below 9 years old in a car or booster seat. As for you, always make sure you wear a seatbelt.
More than just obeying the law, you are ensuring safety for all.
It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
So be a safe and responsible driver!