To protect children in the event of a motor vehicle accident, every state has laws in place regarding the use of child seats. The laws vary a bit from state to state, but are always founded in common sense, and intended to prevent children from being injured or even killed.
Summary of child seat safety laws in South Dakota
In South Dakota, the child seat safety laws can be summarized as follows:
Anyone operating a vehicle in which a child under the age of five is being transported must ensure that the child is secured in a restraint system, according to manufacturer instructions. The system must meet the safety standards mandated by the Department of Transportation.
Children under 5 who weigh 40 pounds or more can be secured using the vehicle’s seat belt system. An exemption applies if the vehicle was made before 1966, and is without seat belts.
Children and infants weighing under 20 pounds must occupy a child safety seat that is facing to the rear, and can recline to 30 degrees.
Children and infants who weigh 20 or more pounds, but not more than 40, must occupy a reclining, rear-facing car seat, or an upright and forward-facing one.
Toddlers who weigh 30 pounds or more must be secured in a booster seat that has either a shield, shoulder straps or a tethered harness. If the seat has a shield, it can be used with the vehicle’s lap belt.
The penalty for violating the child seat safety laws in South Dakota is a fine of $150.
Child seat safety laws are in place to prevent your child from being injured or killed, so make sure that you have the right restraint system, install it correctly, and use it.