Protecting infants while riding in a car isn’t just a responsibility, it’s the law. Every state in the nation requires children less than three years of age to be secured in car seats, and most require booster seats and other appropriate devices even after a child outgrows their car seat.
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for children in the United States, but having your child strapped in a car seat can save their life. Properly installed seats reduce the risk of injury in a crash 71% for infants and 54% for toddlers. There are numerous articles highlighting how properly restrained children have survived a terrible crash.
That means every day, parents, grandparents and other caregivers are accidently risking the safety of their most precious cargo.
Tips on Which Type of Car Seat to Use:
- Never buy a used car seat or booster seat, always purchase a new one.
- All car seats and boosters should only be installed in the back seat
- Infants should always ride in rear-facing car seats as long as possible
- Use a forward-facing safety seat when your child outgrows the rear-facing one, and use it until they are at least seven years old, or they get too big for a car seat
- Children should continue to ride in a booster seat until 12 years of age, or until they are big enough to fit properly into a seat belt
Tips to Install a Car Seat:
- Always do so in the back seat, using the center most position
- Make sure to use the correct seat for your child’s age and size
- Keep infants in rear facing seats
- Secure the seat so it moves no more than one inch from side to side
Anyone who is just not sure if they have the proper car seat, or if it’s installed correctly, can find a list of child passenger safety technicians and car seat safety check events in their area at the Safe Kids website.
And if you need help finding a car seat that will work best with your children, here are some resources to find the device to fit your needs:
As colder weather approaches, there’s one last important piece of advice about car safety seats. Buckle in children without heavy jackets on, to make sure they are in securely. If you worry your child will be cold, put the coat or a blanket over them after they have been fastened-in.
This article is furnished by California Casualty, providing auto and home insurance to educators, law enforcement officers, firefighters and nurses. Get a quote at 1.866.704.8614 or www.calcas.com.
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