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Michigan's child car seat law updated for first time since 2008

Child in a baby car seat -
Child in a baby car seat

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has signed a bill that updates the state's child car seat law.

State Representative Carrie Rheingans (D-Ann Arbor) is the sponsor. She said Michigan's child seat law was last changed in 2008.

"So this has been a while since we've updated them and there's been a lot more advances in restraint safety, child seat safety, and so it's really important for us as a state to keep up with the best federal and industry standards."

One big change is the new law takes age, height, and weight into account before switching a child among a rear-facing seat, a front-facing seat, and a booster seat.

"Because previously we just listed ages, and you know my child is 7, but is a pretty tall 7 year old, and maybe she'll be able to max out in her seat earlier than other kids would," Rheingans said.

The law also requires child car seats to meet the technical requirements from the manufacturer and federal government.

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Tracy Samilton covers energy and transportation, including the auto industry and the business response to climate change for Michigan Radio. She began her career at Michigan Radio as an intern, where she was promptly “bitten by the radio bug,” and never recovered.