It’s sure to be all the rage among child safety advocates and all the panic among parents.  Did you hear?  Your booster may not be recommended!  If it had just been some leading consumer magazine with another sensationalist headline based on faulty test results, we’d be very skeptical.  This time, the report was from the IIHS and UMTRI, two institutions that are very highly respected in the child passenger safety community.

Is your child unsafe?  Should you run out to buy a new booster?  Maybe you should listen to Marvin’s 12 Steps for Safeness plan and avoid boosters altogether?  IS IT TIME TO PANIC?  How can you answer any of those questions with certainty? 

It’s easy and it’s nothing new.  CarseatBlog.Com readers don’t need a lengthy press release to tell them how.  They just follow the simple 5-step test from SafetyBeltSafe U.S.A.  If your child passes the test, then you may answer, “No” to all those questions and essentially consider the IIHS report a nice, relaxing read that isn’t particularly relevant to you at all.  After all, the most important thing is the fit to your child, in your car, with your booster.  Your results may vary from the dummy that resembles a typical 6 year-old in the various cars they used for fit testing.  Keep in mind these were somewhat more subjective evaluations of proper fit that you can easily do yourself, rather than more objective crash testing results.

You may also want to read the full report in PDF format about how some boosters may not fit some kids properly.  There’s also the full study in the IIHS research paper or you can watch the video.

Armed with this information, savvy CarseatBlog.Com readers can grab a coffee and have a good read, ignoring the panic that will likely ensue from mainstream media sources!  Be sure to stay tuned for our recommendations on the safest booster seats, or at least some of our favorites, anyway!