Oklahoma has child safety seat and seat belt requirements that generally apply to all children. The type of restraint required by law varies depending on the age, weight, and height of the child and the guidelines of the child seat manufacturer.
Child safety seat requirements. Under Oklahoma law, children who are younger than eight years old generally must be secured in a child safety seat or booster seat that meets federal standards. (Federal law sets the safety requirements for all types of child safety seats.)
Type of car seat. Generally, there are three types of child safety seats: rear-facing, forward-facing, and boosters. Oklahoma law generally requires children who are younger than two years old to be in a rear-facing seat until they outgrow the weight and height limits of the seat. Children who are at least two years old and younger than four years are typically required to be in a forward-facing car seat. Children who are at least four years old but younger than eight years old must be in a car seat or booster seat.
Oklahoma law generally allows children who are at least eight years old or who are taller than four feet nine inches to use a normal seat belt.
Oklahoma law doesn't specifically prohibit children from riding in the front seat of a vehicle.
Oklahoma law contains a number of exceptions to the normal child passenger restraint rules. Generally, the rules are inapplicable to school buses, taxis, mopeds, motorcycles, and in vehicles where all the seat belt positions are being used by other passengers. Parents can also obtain an exemption to the restraint rules by obtaining a note from a doctor indicating the child shouldn't use normal restraint devices for medical reasons.
A child safety seat violation carries a fine of $50 plus court costs. However, for a first offense, the court will dismiss the fine and limit court costs to $15 if the driver provides proof of acquiring an appropriate car seat.
For more information about child safety seats and inspection events, you can go to the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office website. Also, recalls are occasionally issued for child safety seats. To find out about recalls, you can register with the NHTSA to receive recall information about the seat you have or search for recalls that have already been issued.