If you drive in Nevada you need to know the state's driving laws, particularly as they pertain to child safety seats. Surprisingly enough, most Nevada residents may not be aware of the new Nevada seatbelt and car seat laws. Here are important facts you need to know about seatbelt laws in Nevada.
Seatbelt Requirements in Nevada
Nevada requires nearly all drivers and passengers to wear seatbelts except for certain delivery drivers and under certain conditions. Exemptions to the seatbelt law exist for an individual who has a doctor's note that excuses him, a patient, due to a medical condition. The seatbelt law also does not apply to public transportation or school buses.
New Law in Nevada on Child Seatbelts
Staying updated on Nevada seatbelt and car seat laws will help you avoid getting a citation, which can raise your insurance rates. Nevada passed a new law in 2021 that requires children of any age who are under 4 feet and 9 inches tall to ride in a booster or car seat. The previous law required children who were six years old and 60 pounds to use a booster or car seat. This new law took effect on January 1, 2022.
According to Andrew Bennett from the Nevada Office of Transportation, the new law is designed to ensure seatbelts extend across the child's chest to provide maximum safety. Bennett also warns that an improperly-positioned seatbelt can do more harm than good in a collision. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) states that lap belts must lie across a child's upper thighs, not the stomach. Children are further warned not to ride with the shoulder belt under an arm or behind the back, which can cause serious injuries.
Other Important Nevada Car Seat Laws
Another new Nevada law effective in 2022 is that an infant must sit in a rear-facing car seat or a convertible car seat. Once the child reaches 2 years old or a certain size and weight determined by the car seat manufacturer, parents can choose other options such as booster seats. Rear-facing seats help reduce the risks of head and neck injuries. Nevada, however, does not specify how long a child must ride in a forward-facing child restraint system.
Nevada law further requires that children under 6 years old or 57 inches tall sit in a booster seat or harnessed car seat. It's important to follow the manufacturer's instructions as well to meet maximum and minimum booster seat size requirements. Children typically are not the appropriate size to wear an adult seatbelt until they are 10-12 years old. Keep in mind that adult seatbelts are designed for a person weighing 165 pounds.
Nevada does not specify when a child is old enough to ride in the front seat, but it does prohibit children from riding in the front seat if a passenger airbag is active. Auto manufacturers commonly warn parents not to let kids ride in the front seat until they are at least 13 years of age.
It is always recommended that you keep up with current and future car seat and seatbelt laws so you know how to keep your children safe while driving.
First-Time Nevada Drivers
If you are driving in Nevada for the first time, it's a good idea to check road conditions on the Nevada Department of Transportation website. The site lists road closures, detours, and other relevant travel information. You'll be better prepared for the journey if you take the time to learn about areas and situations to avoid.
Following all Nevada seatbelt and car seat laws will help you avoid getting a citation when traveling within the state. If you are involved in a car accident, schedule a FREE Consultation to learn how CarAccidents.com can help you win the maximum possible compensation from insurance companies.