New law will require many kids to use booster seats longer

OLYMPIA, Wash. -- A new law in Washington state now requires most kids to use booster seats longer than before.

Under the new law, any child under 4 feet 9 inches tall will be required to be in a booster seat. Usually kids don't get that tall until they're 10 or 12 years old.

This might be a bit of a hassle for some parents, but University of Washington pediatricians say it's really critical for their safety.

"A kid who is not in the right car seat can be ejected or moved out of position," said UW pediatrician Dr. Beth Ebel. "And then you don't get the advantage of the car seat and the car environment that's designed to protect the child."

Parents who don't follow the new guidelines could get a ticket. The law also encourages parents to have their kids sit in the back seat whenever possible. Earlier laws let any child 8 years old or older skip the booster seat.