Every state in the country has laws in place geared toward protecting infants and small children from being injured in car accidents. Before you get behind the wheel with a young child as a passenger, it’s important you understand these laws, both for the safety of your child and to prevent yourself from being subject to some stiff penalties.
The following are a few factors you’ll want to take into consideration:
- Safety seats. Babies and young children are required by state law to sit in safety seats while in cars, as seat belts do not offer them enough protection. Check the regulations set by the North Carolina Department of Transportation in terms of the child’s age and size if you are unsure whether your child has to sit in a safety seat.
- Seat belts. Children who are old and big enough to sit in a vehicle without a safety seat will be able to use a seat belt. The vast majority of states have seat belt laws in place, but if you are unsure what the rules are near you, then once again you should check with the Department of Transportation.
- Unsafe driving. Depending on the nature of your unsafe driving offense, having a child as a passenger could actually make you subject to even stricter punishments, as you could be endangering the life of a child. If you are intoxicated behind the wheel as well, you will likely face jail time.
Regardless of the reason you are pulled over, having a child in the back could make your offense worse in the eyes of the law, meaning you could get points on your license, have your license suspended or revoked and be subject to large fines. So make sure your children are safely secured in the back seat and drive carefully whenever you take the road.
To learn more about these types of legal issues, consult the trusted North Carolina auto accident lawyers at Lanier Law Group.