It's been about a year since I first wrote about how dangerous it is to allow our children to sit in the front passenger seat of a car. However, since I still see so many kids unnecessarily riding in the front seat of cars that I pass, I thought it was time to once again stress the danger.
New York State's official Seat Belt Law Brochure states "FOR MAXIMUM PROTECTION, CHILDREN UNDER THE AGE OF 12 SHOULD SIT IN THE REAR SEAT OF THE VEHICLE." I also believe that most cars have this warning located on the passenger seat visor as well.
This is because in an accident airbags deploy with a speed of around 240 miles per hour, the force of which can be fatal or cause serious injuries to a child under 12. I know that most kids want to sit in the front seat before they are 12, and may even ask us everyday to sit in the front. I know for a long time my son did, but I never gave in. Day in and day out he would hit me with "Why not, all my friends sit in the front seat?" Eventually he gave up because my reply was always "No, the airbag is dangerous." Now that my daughter is getting older I thought I would hear the begging as well, but surprisingly I haven't. I can only guess that because she saw that I never allowed my son to do it, that she knew what my answer was going to be.
So, just say "no," you just may save your child's life.
Keep it safe out there.
Mark T. Freeley, Esq. - www.NorthShoreInjuryLawyer.com