Oregon Car Seat Laws (2022) -Rear- or Forward-facing, or Booster

According to the Oregon State Law, children must be restrained in either a child safety seat until they weigh 40 pounds or reach the upper weight or height limit for the car seat in use.

By law, infants under 2 years of age must ride in a rear-facing car seat.

What is the car seat law in Oregon?

Oregon Revised Statutes on Rules of the Road for Drivers in Section ORS 811.210 (1) (a) (D) read: "Operates a motor vehicle on the highways of this state with a passenger who is under 16 years of age and the passenger is not properly secured with a child safety system, safety belt or safety harness as required by subsection (2) of this section."

Oregon State Regulations

Oregon Rear-Facing Car Seat Laws

The Oregon law in Section ORS 811.210 (2) (a) says that infants must ride in a rear-facing position until they are 2 years old.

It’s best to keep your child in a rear-facing car seat as long as possible until they exceed the highest weight or height limit set by the car seat manufacturer.

Convertible and all-in-one are the only two types of car seats that will comply with the regulations.

They are generally designed with higher weight and height limits, allowing infants and toddlers to ride facing the back for a much longer period of time.

For example, Graco Extend2Fit features a rear-facing weight limit of up to 50 pounds.

Another example is Chicco NextFit Zip. It comes with a rear-facing height limit of up to 43 inches.

Oregon Forward Facing Car Seat Laws

When can a child face forward in a car seat in Oregon?

After reaching the upper limit of a rear-facing car seat, a child can legally sit in a forward-facing car seat.

The rule in Section ORS 811.210 (2) (b) does not mention the forward-facing position. It just requires toddlers who weigh 40 pounds or less to be properly secured with a child safety system.

The system must meet or exceed the standards established by the federal government and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

According to the law, the forward-facing seat must be used for as long as the child is within the height and weight limit.

Child Booster Seat Laws in Oregon

The rules in Section ORS 811.210 (2) (c) do not mention booster seats.

However, according to the Oregon Department of Transportation, a child can use a booster seat if they are:

    • 8 years or younger
    • weighing over 40 pounds or reaching the upper weight limit of the forward-facing car seat
    • less than 4’9″ in height

It’s the best practice to keep your child in the forward-facing seat for as long as possible.

Don’t rush to switch to a booster seat.

Seat Belt Laws for Child in Oregon

After a child exceeds the weight or height limit of the booster seats, it’s time to move them from a booster to a safety belt if they meet Oregon’s legal requirements, which do not specify age, weight, or height.

But the Oregon Department of Transportation gives a few tips on checking if your child fits the seat belt properly.

Place your child in the vehicle without a booster seat and then ask these questions. Until you can answer YES to all of the questions, your child should stay in a booster seat.

  • Can the child sit all the way back against the vehicle seat?
  • Do the child’s knees bend comfortably at the edge of the seat?
  • Does the shoulder belt cross the shoulder between the neck and arm?
  • Is the lap belt as low as possible, touching the thighs?
  • Can the child stay comfortably seated like this for the whole trip?

Penalty for Breaking Car Seat Laws in Oregon

Violations of Oregon’s car seat laws are considered Class D traffic infractions and violators will receive a fine minimum of $115.

Oregon Car Seat Laws Apply for

The parent and legal guardian are responsible for the child’s safety in the car seat. They should make sure the child be secured in a proper child restraint system.

Exceptions:

Taxi, school bus.

When can a child sit in the front seat in Oregon?

There is no law in Oregon prohibiting children from sitting in the front seat. However, a rear-facing car seat cannot be installed in a front seating position if the airbag is active. It’s a good idea to ride a child in the back seat as long as possible until they are 13 years old, which is the best age recommended to sit in the front.

Taxi Car Seat Law in Oregon

Taxis are exempt from child restraint laws in Oregon. However, that doesn’t mean taxis are safe and you shouldn’t make sure of your child’s safety.

Age, Weight, Height Requirements in Oregon Law​

Based on the Oregon laws, we summarize its age, weight, and height requirements for a child as below: 

  • Rear-facing (stage 1): under two years old
  • Forward-facing (stage 2): under 40 pounds
  • Booster (stage 3): under 8 years of age, less than 4’9″, over 40 pounds
  • Seat belt (stage 4): at least 8 years old, 57 inches or taller

Oregon Car Seat Check-Up Events

Oregon Impact along with most car seat safety programs in the US is no longer providing in-person/live car seat safety checks for the time being during the coronavirus impact. However, help is still available.

Oregon Impact is currently making appointments for car seat education sessions, along with other local partners. Please call 503-899-2220 or email Oregon Car Seat Safety for more information.

Best Car Seats to Work with Oregon Laws

Rear- and Forward-Facing for Infants and Toddlers

Graco Extend2Fit Convertible Car Seat

Graco Extend2Fit

Chicco NextFit Zip Convertible Car Seat

Chicco NextFit Zip

$299.99*

This convertible car seat is great enough to meet the parent’s need to ride their kids in the rear- and front-facing for a longer time. It features 50-lb rear-facing weight limit to be one of the best rear-facing car seats for 2 years old.

When using it facing front, the 65-lb weight limit makes it go through the preschool ages – 3 years old, 4 years old, and 5 years old.

Booster Seats for Big Kids

Graco TurboBooster Backless Booster

Graco TurboBooster Backless Booster

$24.99*

The Graco TurboBooster is the most popular and best budget car seat to meet the law to ride older children, six or seven years old, or even bigger.

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