In Pennsylvania, children aged eight and under are required to be restrained in a car seat when riding in a vehicle. This includes if the child is riding in an Uber, Lyft, or another ridesharing vehicle. A recent study has highlighted ridesharing vehicles failing to use car seats when transporting children.
Riding in a properly-fitting car seat or booster seat greatly reduces injury to children in the event of a car accident. First responders who have witnessed the aftermath of car accidents can attest to what happens to children in accidents where the child was not properly restrained.
Pennsylvania Child Safety Restraint Laws
In Pennsylvania, children under the age of two must be secured in a rear-facing car seat until the child grows out of the height or weight designations of the manufacturer. Children that are two to three years old should be kept rear-facing for as long as possible. When the child outgrows the height or weight specifications on the rear-facing car seat, then the child can ride in a front-facing car seat with a five-point harness.
Children ages four to seven should travel in a harness until they reach the maximum height or weight on the car seat, then they can transition to a booster seat. Children this age must remain in the back seat. Children ages eight to 12 should be kept in a booster seat until they are big enough to fit in a regular seat properly without a booster. The seat belt should fit snugly across the upper thighs, not the stomach. Additionally, the shoulder belt should lie across the chest and shoulder and not the neck or face.
Rideshare Drivers and Child Passengers
In a recent experiment with six Uber and Lyft drivers, five out of six of them said they would allow a child, who was two-years-old, to ride in the vehicle without a restraint with an adult. Ultimately, the drivers did not drive the children since the rider explained the experiment before the driver operated the car. When the drivers were asked if Uber or Lyft had provided any information about child safety restraint laws to the drivers, they responded that they had not.
Only one driver stated that she would not agree to let the child ride without a car seat. Another driver told the adult to hold the child tight while riding and another driver said that he was okay with the child riding without a car seat, if the adult was okay with it as well.
Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyers at Geoffrey B. Gompers & Associates Help Victims Injured in Car Accidents
If an accident occurs and a non-restrained child is injured in a ridesharing vehicle, liability could depend on many factors involved and could vary based on the situation. If you or your child suffered injuries after a car accident, the Philadelphia car accident lawyers at Geoffrey B. Gompers & Associates can help. Contact us today by calling 215-567-6600 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. With locations in Philadelphia and New Jersey, we serve clients from the surrounding areas.