Monday, August 15, 2011

Is your child safely secured?

As a mother of a 14-month-old, I understand the difficulty of wading through all the information, instructions, reviews, and opinions about child car seats. My husband and I kept our son in an infant seat until a couple of weeks ago simply because it seemed like too much of a hassle to figure out how to install the new one we had gotten for him. I resolved to make the switch after realizing that he was more than two inches taller than the height maximum on the infant seat. Not to mention that his legs were looking more than a little cramped. I had assumed that he still "fit" the infant seat because he weighed much less than the maximum weight allowed. As I pulled the new car seat out, I was immediately overwhelmed by the number of straps and contraptions attached to it. I finally got it installed, thankfully.

With child car seats on my mind, I was quite alarmed to learn recently that according to a study performed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 70% of children are in seats that are either inappropriate for the child or are incorrectly installed, while 95% of parents think their child is safely secured. That being said, and in light of the upcoming Child Passenger Safety Week (September 18-24), maybe we should all be asking if our children are in the right seats and whether those seats have been installed correctly.

The NHTSA provides a wealth of information to help us keep our children safe, including car seat recommendations for children of all ages, current child seat laws for every state, and information about Child Passenger Safety Week. Visit their website by clicking here.

As part of Child Safety Passenger Week, on Saturday, September 24, certified child passenger safety technicians will be available to inspect car seats and provide advice free of charge. Click here to find your nearest inspection station.

1 comment:

  1. is also a good reference as the guidelines have recently been changed.

    The quick reference:
    1. Rear-facing seat - Birth to 2 years (and at least 20 pounds)
    2. Forward facing carseat - 2 to 4 years (20-50 pounds)
    3. Booster seat - 4-8 years (at least 40 pounds, up to 4'9" tall)

    What I really don't understand is WHY school busses are not equipped with seat does that keep our kids safe?


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