I hate car seats.  They are bulky, heavy, hard to install and expensive.  Thankfully I’ve seen a lot of improvements in them since I first became a mom over ten years ago.  For anyone out there shopping I’d high recommend checking out the Diono (formerly Sunshine Kids) convertible seats.  Besides having a high weight limit with a 5-point harness they are narrow.  This might not seem like a big deal when you have one kid, but put two car seats in your vehicle and suddenly you have no space for a third person back there.  With a nice narrow car seat you can actually fit three across – a huge deal when you’re trying to avoid a bigger car.

My little kid zonked out in his Diono Radian car seat

For current child restraint laws for the state of Tennessee click here.

If you’re looking to get your car seat checked for proper installation there are a few options in the area.

  • The West Tennessee Child Passenger Safety Center is tasked with automotive safety for kids under 14.  They have 6 fitting stations in Shelby County.  Check the site for info.
  • The NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) provides a list of car seat inspection stations on their website.
  • At Methodist Germantown the Perinatal Services Department does car seat checks. The contact is Cathy Akin at 901-516-6645
  • Susan Helms with Mid-South Safe Kids can check your car seat or get you in touch with someone who does. Call them at 901-287-6730 or check their website for upcoming events.

Thanks to Baptist Memorial Hospital for sending me the following info:

  • Bartlett Police Department – 385-5500
    No appointment necessary- they take “drop-ins” 7 days a week between the hours of 7am- 7pm
  • Collierville Police Department– 853-3207
    Please call and ask to schedule an appointment with a car seat technician Officer Borders who will call you back to arrange a time & location for your car seat check – no drop in’s.
  • Fayette County Sheriff Department – 465-3456
    Please call for an appointment- no drop in’s.
  • Germantown Police Department– 754-7222
    Please call for an appointment- no drop-in’s
  • Millington Police Department – 873-3340
    Please call to schedule an appointment with Sargent Merchant, he is there between the hours of 3pm – 11pm – no drop in’s.
  • Shelby County Health Department – 544-7687
    If you do not have a car seat and have Tenn Care or are on WIC- you can contact the Health Department to get a car seat for a reduced price- no drop in’s, you must call to schedule an appointment to get the seat and they will provide information on what you need to bring to get the seat and will also provide information on installing it.
  • Baptist Women’s Hospital– 227-9873
    Car seat checks are done by “appointment only” for patients delivering at Baptist Womens, we are unable accommodate “outside requests for help” or drop-ins. Please call 227-9873 to schedule.