Child Passenger Safety Week Can Save Lives
It is no secret; it has been quite some time since I had little ones of my own. My kids are “all grown up” (not really, but they sure act like it sometimes). I mean right now my biggest worry is the fact that they are driving themselves, in their OWN cars! So car seats aren’t really something I think about on a daily basis. But I do have friends and family who still have kiddos that are small enough to still be in a car seat. When they visit us or we take them somewhere, I always find that I am questioning whether or not I have the seat hooked up right! It has been at least 10 years since we had our own seats, so lots of things change in such a long period of time.
It really makes me sad to know that motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death for children age 1 to 13 in the USA. In 2013, a child under 13 was involved in a crash every 33 seconds. Those are some astounding numbers, really. My kids are just over that age, so to imagine something happening to them or someone we love, it breaks my heart.
Instead of worrying and questioning if you have the right seat, take advantage of Child Passenger Safety Week and the great resources that Safecar.gov is offering free for parents!
- Installation Resources: If a car seat is not installed correctly, your child’s safety could be compromised. Every car seat has different installation instructions. You can find resources and tips here to help you get “the right fit” on your car seats: http://www.safercar.gov/parents/RightFit.htm
- Free Car Seat Inspections: During Child Passenger Safety Week, there will be events across the country where Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians will inspect car seats and show parents and caregivers how to correctly install and use them. In most cases, this service is free of charge. Locate a car seat check event here: http://www.safercar.gov/cpsApp/cps/index.htm
Car Seat Safety Tips:
- Find a car seat that fits your child. As children grow, how they sit in your car will change. Make sure the car seat you purchase is designed to fit your child’s current size and age and allows some room growth.
- Not all car seats fit in all vehicles so test the car seat you plan to buy to make sure it fits well in your vehicle.
- Before putting your child in a car seat, read the manufacturer’s instructions so you know how your car seat works and how to install it.
- All-in-One car seats offer you the advantage of using the same seat for the following positions: rear-facing, forward-facing with harness, then booster. These seats typically have higher height and weight limits for the rear-facing position, allowing you to keep your child rear-facing for a longer period of time, which physicians and safety experts strongly recommend.
Remember, the best car seat is the one that fits your child properly, is easy to use, fits in your vehicle correctly, and which you’ll use every time! I hope that you will take the opportunity to share this with friends, family and co-workers who may have little ones in car seats as well. This is an important issue that definitely should be shared with other parents.
Share the information with friends and family using Twitter and Facebook! Get the word out for Child Passenger Safety Week!
Sample Tweets/Status Updates:
- How confident are you that your child’s car seat or booster is #therightseat? Car crashes are a leading cause of death for children 1 to 13 years old. safercar.gov/therightseat #therightseat
- Many parents may not realize their child is in the wrong car seat. Visitsafercar.gov/therightseat and make sure your child is riding safely. #therightseat
- To locate a Certified Child Passenger Safety Technician in your area, go to safercar.gov/therightseat or download the free SaferCar app from the iTunes App Store and Google Play.
- Register your car seat and booster seat at safercar.gov/therightseat so you will be informed if there is a safety recall on your model.