TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott announced he has signed HB 225, which revises child restraint requirements to increase the safety of children passengers in motor vehicles.
Current law requires every motor vehicle operator in Florida use a crash-tested, federally approved child restraint device for children 3 years or younger. HB 225 extends current requirements to include children 4 and 5 years old.
Governor Rick Scott said, “As a father and grandfather, I know how important it is to make the safety of Florida’s children a top priority. With this initiative, we are working to ensure our children travel safely and remain protected on the road. We will continue to do all we can to keep every Floridian safe, so they can enjoy everything our great state has to offer with their loved ones.”
Senator Anitere Flores, Senate bill sponsor, said, “Governor Scott is helping to save lives by signing this legislation today. I am grateful to have played a part in passing legislation that will promote the well being of Florida’s youngest and protect them on the roads.”
Senator Garrett Richter, President Pro-Tempore, said, “I am honored to join Governor Scott in supporting legislation that will change the requirements for child restraint devices in order to save lives. We remain committed to doing all we can to keep our children safe and sound.”
Senator John Thrasher said, “Choosing an insufficient form of vehicle safety on one day can alter a family forever. Governor Scott and my fellow members are committed to keeping Florida’s families happy and safe by passing legislation that enforces the proper child restraint devices.”
Senator Thad Altman, “We understand that the safety procedures we follow as adults are not always applicable to our young children. By passing legislation that requires four and five year old children remain in child restraint devices, the Governor is supporting our efforts to keep every Floridian safe.”
Senator Jack Latvala said, “Governor Scott has proven his dedication to Florida families once again by signing this bill into law. HB 225 will foster great changes to keep our young children safe and secure as they travel in our state.”
Senator Jeff Brandes said, “As a father of three, the safety of my kids on the road is my top priority. This legislation is about common sense safety standards, and I thank Governor Scott for signing it into law to protect Florida’s children.”
Representative Keith Perry, House bill sponsor, said, “We all want to ensure the safety for our loved ones and the safety of all of Florida’s families, and that is why we have worked to pass HB 225. This legislation signed by the governor will play a major role in keeping our children safe and protected.”
Representative Jimmy Patronis said, “I am grateful to Governor Scott for signing legislation that will improve the safety of our youngest passengers in vehicles throughout the state. We will never stop working to ensure our children are safe and protected wherever they go.”
Representative Ed Hooper said, “My fellow legislators and I stand with the Governor in his support and signing of HB225 to strengthen safety regulations for our children. It is crucial that our children are protected with the proper restraint devices so they can travel without harm.”
Representative Daniel Davis said, “Ensuring the safety of our state’s children is always our most important priority. By signing this legislation, Governor Scott is continuing our commitment to keeping our children safe each day.”
Representative Dennis Baxley said, “We are committed to keeping even our youngest travelers safe on the roads. I am proud to join Governor Scott in supporting this legislation on behalf of Florida families.”
Representative Ray Pilon said, “It is our responsibility to do everything we can to ensure Florida’s children are safe on the roads. I am proud to work with the governor to pass this important legislation and protect the most vulnerable.”
Representative Holly Merrill Raschein said, “The safety and well-being of our young children is an issue of the utmost importance to Governor Scott and to every member of the legislature. I am thankful to have had the opportunity to back change that will protect all of Florida’s children.”
Representative Daphne Campbell said, “Parents strive to keep their children safe, and using the correct child restraint device could keep an accident from becoming a tragedy. I applaud the governor for his commitment to providing protection for Florida’s children.”
Representative Irv Slosberg said, “As parents and families travel across Florida, it is crucial that the proper attention is given to keeping our young children safe on the roads. This legislation signed by Governor Scott is a great step to ensuring our families and children safely arrive at their destinations.”
Terry L. Rhodes, Executive Director of the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, said, “Tragically, vehicle crashes are one of the leading cause of death among children in the United States. By requiring those five and younger to be securely fastened in a proper child restraint device has tremendous potential for saving lives and preventing injuries.”
Kimberly Guy, President of St. Joseph's Children's Hospital, said, "This legislation is a much-needed step to protect the safety of children across Florida. At St. Joseph's Children's Hospital, we know firsthand that booster seats save lives. We commend Governor Scott and the Legislature for enacting this important measure into law."
Kevin Bakewell, Senior Vice President and Chief Public Affairs Officer for AAA – The Auto Club Group, said, “AAA applauds Governor Scott’s commitment to keeping children safe on our roadways by enacting House Bill 225. On matters of public safety, Florida's parents look to state law for solid guidance. That's why this law is so important.”
Sandra F. Magyar, Executive Director of the Florida Public Health Association, said, “Child safety is very important to the membership of the Florida Public Health Association (FPHA) and each year we have supported legislation that addresses keeping our children safe and healthy. The passage of HB 225 is one more way to ensure that our 4 & 5 year old children remain safe while being transported in a motor vehicle. By replacing the seat belt option with a child booster seat, this age group will be more secure in a car. FPHA thanks the Legislature for recognizing this need and passing HB 225. And we greatly appreciate Governor Scott for signing this important legislation into law.”
Timothy J. Stapleton, Executive Vice President of the Florida Medical Association said, “Research has shown that restraining older children in car seats rather than just using seat belts dramatically reduces their risk of serious injury in the event of an accident. This has been a priority of Florida's pediatricians for years, and the FMA was proud to support legislation that will protect children and save lives. We thank Governor Scott for signing this important bill into law."
Dr. Beth Walford, All Children’s pediatric surgeon and Suncoast Safe Kids Director, said, “As the lead agency for Suncoast Safe Kids Coalition, All Children's Hospital recognizes that booster seat laws work and HB 225 will decrease the injury risk in children. This is an important step in keeping our children safer on Florida’s roads and highways and we salute the Governor and Legislature for taking action.”
Chief Philip Thorne, President of Florida Police Chiefs Association, said, "The safety of our children is a top priority for Florida law enforcement, and this new law will keep our children safer while traveling in vehicles," said Springfield Police Chief Philip Thorne. "On behalf of Florida's police chiefs, I want to thank Governor Scott for signing this important bill today."
Mobeen Rathore, M.D., President of the Florida Chapter American Academy of Pediatrics (FCAAP), said, “The Florida Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics is delighted to have played a critical role in modernizing Florida's booster seat requirements. These changes will provide greater safety and protection for our children. We and the pediatricians of the State greatly appreciate the support of the legislature and Governor Scott on this issue.”