National Seat Check Saturday
When my kids were finally able to buckle themselves into their car seats by themselves, I felt liberated. I’d open the van door with my automatic remote, the kids would run and jump in, and I’d close it with the remote. By the time I had slid into my seat and started the car, the kids were set…all by themselves.
This has become our routine and every morning as I prepare to throw the car into reverse I yell back, “Is everyone buckled?” and they give me the green light. The fact is, however, that I still need to check that they’re restrained properly. I find myself reminding my son a couple times a week to slide his chest clip up because I know it needs to line up with his armpits. My daughter may have on a puffy skirt one day and tight leggings the next, so I often reach back and adjust the tightness of the straps. When things become routine, parents have the potential to become complacent, and in the case of child passenger safety that can be deadly.
Currently motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for children ages 3 and older. It is often simply because parents don’t realize that their children are not properly restrained. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), nearly 3 out of 4 car seats are not used correctly.
This month NHTSA is once again holding their national Child Passenger Safety Week along with National Seat Check Saturday on September 25th. This is the perfect time for you to have your child’s safety seat installation inspected and learn more about the right car seat at different stages of your child’s growth. To find a car seat inspection station near you for National Seat Check Saturday, visit: http://www.nhtsa.gov/cps/cpsfitting/index.cfm. You can also learn more about child passenger safety including viewing instructional videos and searching recall lists at http://childcarsafety.adcouncil.org/.
Our children’s safety is important year round. This month, we’re getting a little help keeping them safe. To learn more visit NHTSA at http://www.nhtsa.gov/Safety/CPS.
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